If you’re not reading Image’s Motor Crush, you’re making a huge mistake. Created by the team that made Batgirl one of DC’s best book in the New 52 era, it follows Domino Swift, a motorcycle racing addict who needs a mysterious pink substance called “Crush” in order to survive.
When last we saw Domino, she had just discovered that she had somehow travelled ahead in time two years after taking a huge amount of Crush. Though we didn’t learn much more than that, it did kind of seem like her beloved father, Sully might be dead. Though we quickly learn that he is alive and healthy in this issue, we also learn that doesn’t mean he isn’t in a bad place: Sully has become an enforcer for the same evil Crush producers that have repeatedly threatened the lives of just about everyone Domino cares about. It’s the first shocking and juicy twist of the issue, but it’s not the last.
Before the time jump, Motor Crush was already very good. It established its world and characters well and the art was some of the best in comics. Post-time jump, it may be even better. Largely, that’s because of the way the creative team (Brendan Fletcher, Cameron Stewart and Babs Tarr, who share writing and art duties in a way perhaps only they can untangle) isn’t afraid to totally turn Domino’s world upside down. While Sully’s dark turn is a shock, learning that Domino’s ex, Lola, has settled into a longterm relationship with a woman named Beatriz is equally earth-shaking.
Lola–a gifted mechanic who looks like the hottest pin-up girl you’ve ever seen–and Domino had a rocky past, but you rooted for them because of how much they clearly cared for each other. That connection is immediately obvious again here, but Beatriz also seems like exactly the kind of person Lola needs. Domino’s distance and, frankly, selfishness were big obstacles in her relationship with Lola and in the brief glimpse we get of her, Beatriz seems everything but. She accepts Domino’s presence with very few questions and focuses instead on making sure the woman she loves doesn’t get hurt. It’s exactly the right tone to strike and sets up one hell of a love triangle for the future.
Based on all that plot stuff, you might think you can’t just jump into Motor Crush with this issue. Noting could be further from the truth. Thanks to the time jump, Lola has to do a fair amount of recapping for Domino’s benefit and, honestly, this issue is so good and sets up such exciting storylines that it makes almost everything that came before feel like prologue. The real story starts now and it’s off to a great start.