Written by Rachel Freeman
Crosswind is published by Image Comics. It is written by Gail Simone with art by Cat Staggs.
I didn’t get to do a review of the first issue of this series because I was pretty swamped, so I’m just going to do my intro now. So for starters, I’m a huge Gail Simone fan. Like…if her name is on it, I’m going to read it. It’s just the way it is. This comic was originally announced at Image Expo 2015 and I have been anxiously waiting for it ever since. Now it’s here and all is well in the world.
Well…our world at least.
Things are not going so well in the world of housewife, Juniper Blue and mob hitman, Cason Bennett, who have suddenly and inexplicably switched bodies. Juniper was in a grocery store shopping for supplies to make an impressive dinner for her husband’s boss and Cason was in the middle of cleaning up a murder. You can imagine they were both quite shocked by their new surroundings. Shortly after, they each receive a mysterious call from a stranger who knows what has happened to them but rather than explaining how or why, he basically tells them to take care of the task at hand (cleaning up a a murder and making a fancy dinner) or they will never get to return to their previous lives.
It is amazing to see how these two characters apply their knowledge and skill of their actual lives and apply it to the situation they have been thrown in to. Despite becoming a housewife and having clear directions from Mr. Blue, Cason instead rises to the occasion and makes his own dinner from his actual family recipe. He also quickly puts Mrs. Blue’s stepson in his place. Even so, the way he speaks and his mannerisms are still very much those of his true self. Meanwhile, Juniper, who used to write detective stories, gives orders to Siggy on how to dispose of the body and cleans up the entire crime scene by herself, leaving it spotless. It seems like things are going great for both of our protagonists, until they are both thrown a curveball that is equally and uniquely detrimental to both situations.
The way this comic tells the story, we are constantly watching things happening side by side and switching page by page. There are very few instances where one perspective goes on for longer than the other. Even though its just a dinner, this has become just as crucial to Cason as covering up a murder is to Juniper. You really feel it when you are watching panel by panel changing between Cason cooking as Juniper and Juniper cleaning up blood as Cason. This artistic layout is just perfect. Gail Simone and Cat Staggs clearly have an understanding of each other that not all authors and artists are able to obtain. The fluidity of dialogue and panel sequencing all comes together so nicely. Top it off with Simone’s amazing characterization and Stagg’s super-edgy-crime-esque art style and there really isn’t much more you could ask for.
OVERALL SCORE: 9.8 / 10
I know its a measly 0.2 points, but it did bother me a bit that NO ONE said anything to “Juniper” or “Cason” about their behavior. Kelly, the stepson, didn’t comment at all on Juniper cussing, smacking him and talking like, well, like she was raised by a mob family. And while Cason’s partner briefly says he’s “worrying” him, he doesn’t actually seem worried or like he notices Cason’s proper grammar and now meager demeanor.
Ultimately, this comic, yet again, delivers a quality and intriguing story with great characters and a fabulous and unique way of telling it’s story. So make sure you pick up a copy of Crosswind #2 from your local comic store.