MISS FURY: SENSATIONAL SUNDAYS 1941-1944 (Library Of American Comics/ IDW, 2013; Hardcover)
Collects Miss Fury Sunday Strip 1-158b, originally published on April 6, 1941- April 16, 1941.
Writer and Artist: Tarpe Mills
This first volume in the series was released after the second one. I loved the first (second) book when I read it, but some story elements eluded me early on in that book because they were plotlines that carried over from this one. That wrong has been righted with the release of this book. This strip was originally titled Black Fury, a nod to the black leopard skin costume that our femme fatale, Marla Drake, wore. In truth she doesn't wear it very much as the series progresses. While she is billed as a superhero, Miss Fury is in truth a World War II spy strip with dizzying plotline twists. Mills juggled so many plates that it's nothing short of a miracle that she didn't drop any.
There are some cheesecake and S & M elements here, made all the more curious considering that the strip was written and drawn by a woman. This was a true rarity for an adventure strip in this era. I wonder if Mills was pandering to her predominately male audience or if she genuinely enjoyed presenting this sort of thing.
Being a weekly strip, there were weeks and sometimes a month or more without so much as an appearance by the supposed star of the strip, and you know what? It doesn't matter one bit. Some of these supporting characters are as interesting as Miss Fury. Mills' artwork is unique and adds a certain charm to this strip. I am buying more and more of these strip books these days, and the ones from the IDW Library Of American Comics imprint are some of the best out there.
Junk Food For Thought rating: 4.5 out of 5.
The OCD zone- While this is presented in an oversized format, I have no idea if this is presented in the same size at the strips originally appeared.
Linework and Color restoration: Scans with the yellowing removed. Most look really good but there are a few pages that are from inferior sources, possibly even scanned at lower resolution than the rest of the book. All of the problems found with old four color comics are present here (line bleed, off register printing, etc.).
Paper stock: Beautiful, super thick off-white uncoated stock.
Binding: Smyth sewn binding, lays flat. Built in ribbon bookmark. Those aren't my cup of tea but seem to be standard in many of these strip collections.
Hardback cover notes: The dustjacket has a dull finish that requires careful handling. The hardback has a vintage feeling casewrap which I find to be appealing.