This month marks the arrival of the 5th annual 30 Characters Challenge, the excellent event run by ComixTribe publisher Tyler James, where participants have to create a new comic character for every day of the whole month of November. I participated in the first year, successfully completing the challenge with 30 badly-drawn characters of my own, but haven’t done it again since. I won’t be participating this year either, but thought it might be fun to spend each day writing up a little showcase to celebrate a new comic character who showed up in comic pages for the first time this year. Comics are one of the most highly inventive mediums around, and this has been a particularly strong year for pumping out exciting new stories packed with compelling new characters. Let’s take a look at some of my favourites.
Yesterday we talked about Deathface Ginny, the ostensive headline character of Pretty Deadly. But based on the first issue at least, the actual main character of the story is Sissy. A young girl with a distinctive cloak made from a skinned vulture, it is her who sings the song of Ginny in the first issue, and her whose ill-advised act of theft brings wicked forces down on her and her companions.
A favourite moment of mine in Pretty Deadly #1 was the conversation between Sissy and the little boy in the house they’re sheltering in. I loved the dynamic of them both appearing to be around the same age, but Sissy being much more worldly and beleagured than her wide-eyed companion. Throughout the issue, Emma Rios does a great job of alternating between making Sissy appear very wise and alien with her unusual eyes, and emphasizing how young and childish she actually is with her oversized clothes and soft features.
I don’t know if Sissy will remain a focus once Ginny enters the fray, but for the moment I find her to be a compelling young protagonist.