‘Silk’ is a series that is full of very old-school energy in the sense that it takes time to build the life and world of its character alongside all of the superhero action moments. An energetic and emotional series not afraid to dig into the intricacies of living life in our present-day world.
Debuting new characters within these comic book universes that have been running for decades is not an easy prospect. For every one that catches on with the audience at the time, ten others end up in character limbo either for only cameos going forward or till some new writer down the line can find a way to dust them off and maybe give them a second chance.
Cindy Moon, Silk, is one of those characters that managed to attract attention when she emerged in 2014 and has chugged along and been part of some really good stories.
She has probably had the least exposure compared to much of the massive group of Spider-related characters, but that seems to be changing. Thanks to a successful 2021 miniseries, coming after a multi-year gap following her 2014 limited series & short-lived 2015 ongoing series, Cindy Moon got another go in this here series which was her fourth.
Just like Maurene Goo did with the previous mini-series, writer Emily Kim instantly taps into the energy that makes Cindy very different from Peter Parker personality-wise, but very much the same in the areas of responsibility and heroism. The weight of guilt is something that seems to hang around Peter a lot, mined constantly in his books, while with Cindy that isn’t there. She has steady relationships with her family and friends, a solid handle on her job (even an interesting relationship with boss J. Jonah Jameson), and sees a therapist with whom she can openly talk about her personal and superhero life issues.
Honestly, it showcases the fact that you can tell stories about responsibility and drama where a spider character can be an accomplished adult that isn’t constantly failing in life. Peter Parker should be taking notes from Cindy.
Choosing to focus on an ancient youth-stealing Korean witch was a very inspired choice, especially when because of her decade spent in a bunker Cindy is very much an old soul trying to navigate this world as well. One of my favorite moments in the series is a great scene using Cindy’s journalism career to give us the lore dump about the threat while telling a great story about the pressures of superheroism and the struggle to find oneself and their place in this world. Watching Cindy bounce from classes she misses or zones out, to getting a date, trying to please her boss, going to a friend’s concert, and then having her superhero times mess it up adds such depth to the character and the world.
Tackling a story that is light and fun but also has dark or firm elements to it needs the right artistic team and this book has that in Takeshi Miyazawa and Ian Herring. They perfectly balance that line of whimsical/fun and grounded that fits this type of character and story. Miyazawa has a very detailed, smooth, and energetic style that fits this character and her world, capturing both action as well as emotions easily and perfectly. Herring’s colors match this as they showcase a variety of brighter colors but also are toned down almost muted in many ways to give us that sort of “the world around us” tone.
All that emotional work means that we don’t have to be told how a character is feeling or how a scene should be going, as the artwork speaks for itself. Leaving room for the dialogue to focus on other things.
Ariana Maher is a name I love to see on credits of books because what she does with lettering is beyond so many others. Lettering is something too many folks take for granted and don’t recognize as the art form that it is. With Maher, it’s all the ‘little things’ that she does like making fonts match the ‘tone’ of speaking (small fonts for a whisper, bigger for yelling, etc) as well as the perfect use of sentence case for dialogue rather than the standard all caps that is generally used. It makes all the wording feel more real and relatable in a way.
Just like the SFX are very much connected to whatever they are the sound for, making them integral to the scene, which is another level of sort of realism that works.
Honestly, I could spend a whole long run just following Cindy dealing with juggling life, trying to find herself, and occasional superhero stuff. It’s really refreshing and light while also being very deep as it tackles issues that all of us, even the non-fictional superheroes, have to deal with regularly. Someone get this character an ongoing right now, preferably with this creative team attached.
Silk Vol 2: Age Of The Witch is now available.