Review: ‘Scoop: Buried Leads’ Is A Solid Mystery That Needs To Pick A Lane
by James Ferguson
Is it a mystery story? Or a sci-fi one? Maybe it’s a supernatural tale? Scoop: Buried Leads continues the tale of the young investigative reporter Sophie Cooper as she encounters everything from a murder case and feuding TV stations to alien invaders and talking alligator people.
After proving her father’s innocence and dealing with alien invaders, you’d think Sophie Cooper might take some time off. The teenage investigator is like a magnet for mysteries as new ones pop up left and right, all vying for her attention. A famous chef wants her to help clear his name after he was accused of murdering his ex-wife. Is this connected to the aliens she’s encountered before? How can she prepare for her quinceñera and handle her internship at the local news station with all this going on?
There is a lot to sift through in Scoop: Volume 2 – Buried Leads. Any one of the plot threads in this book would have been enough to focus on. Instead, the book can’t pick a lane, bouncing from a thriller to sci-fi to teen drama and back again. This volume has a murder mystery, alien invaders, time travel, talking alligator men, a swamp monster, a rivalry between TV stations, high school romance, and family troubles.
What threw me for a loop is how casual everyone seems to be about the aliens and the alligator people. Everyone just kind of takes it in stride, like it’s totally normal to talk to mutant alligators in your day-to-day life. Granted, I haven’t read the first volume of Scoop, so maybe this was addressed then, but it seems weird.
Sophie’s past and her determined nature when it comes to solving mysteries. She’s a pretty likable character too, so that helps. You want to see her succeed, regardless of the odds stacked up against her.
Sophie looks young and innocent, yet strong and fierce. It’s an interesting mix that artist Pablo Andres excels at. Sophie strikes this balance between a tough girl you don’t want to mess with and someone you want to protect. The thing is, she doesn’t need your protection. She proves that with every action. She can and does do everything herself including heading into the swamp to confront some weird entity and chasing after a killer.
Sophie’s quinceñera becomes a focal point for this volume as it brings a bunch of characters together. Andres makes this shine, showing a bit of normalcy in this young woman’s life. She’s the star and all eyes are on her…which of course means that’s when the clues come together and she cracks the case.
Colorist Kike J. Diaz controls the tone here, shifting from the bright, warm tones of the party to the darker, shadowy palette of the mystery and intrigue. You immediately understand the sudden danger Sophie finds herself in.
Although Scoop: Volume 2 – Buried Leads can be read on its own, it’s clear that this is the next chapter in Sophie’s overall story. It builds on what came before and adds a lot to this mythos and what’s next for this intrepid reporter. There’s just too much going on at once so there’s quite a lot of story crammed into these 100 pages. Scoop is like a next generation Veronica Mars with the same tenacity and determination, coupled with some supernatural and otherworldly elements to set it apart.
Scoop: Volume 2 – Buried Leads from Insight Editions is available now at your local comic shop and Amazon.