Release Date: 8/12/15
Words: Jeremy Haun & Jason A. Hurley
Pictures: Jeremy Haun
The hook is as follows: Modern society is obsessed with outward beauty. What if there was a way to guarantee you could become more and more beautiful every day? What if it was a sexually transmitted disease? In the world of The Beauty, physical perfection is attainable. The vast majority of the population has taken advantage of it, but Detectives Foster and Vaughn will soon discover it comes at a terrible price. Writer/artist Jeremy Haun and co-writer Jason A. Hurley offer up a startling reflection on the cost of looking good in this procedural science fiction tale.
Since this IS the part where I confess my opinion of said book I must be honest… I picked up this book, one, because it’s an Image title, and two, because I saw the cover and thought, “Pretty!” How’s that for shallow?
Lucky for me The Beauty is pretty freaking awesome. I mean, what a concept! I was just reading an article the other day about a woman who was diagnosed with cancer. When she was healthy she had always struggled with her weight. In about two months with her illness her health declined so much, so fast, that she lost a lot of weight. People began telling her how great she looked despite her dark circles under her eyes and loss of hair. This angered her, understandably so, because what does that say about a society that values beauty over health? It’s deplorable. It’s sick. It’s ugly. It’s the world we live in right now. The public at large will certainly take advantage of a quick and easy fix. Who doesn’t want to be outwardly young and beautiful?
The Beauty depicts a world not too dissimilar from our own, only this one offers a fast and tempting fix for our vanity issues. A sexually transmitted disease called The Beauty is unleashed upon the world. Once infected the person becomes younger, slimmer, and obviously beautiful. It’s the kind of beautiful only Photoshop makes possible and many people want it. They go out and get it, regardless of the price. Of course there are going to be opposition because life is all about conflict. Enter detectives Foster and Vaughn who are called in on a new threat to The Beautys, death by sudden internal combustion. Is it the disease itself? Is it the backlash of the uninfected? The first issue sets up the hook and sinks it in firmly. The detectives are not fully developed yet but the reader gets just enough to know they are flawed and interesting. You will want to know what is going to happen to them and what they will find in their investigation of this mysterious crime in such an intriguing world. The writing is solid and the story has the potential to go in any number of directions. I cannot wait to see how it all plays out.
As one would expect, the art is gorgeous. It is painfully clear who the infected are and are not. It’s a gritty sci-fi crime tale and the art gets dark and gritty in all the right places. It’s a bit stunning when you see those infected with The Beauty in the midst of some ugly situations. I don’t think the words and pictures could have been so in tune with any other team of creators. Just looking at this book makes me sick and intrigued at the same time.
If you are looking for that something new and original with some disturbingly haunting after affects, don’t pass up The Beauty. Honestly, the hook is all you need. This title is no doubt for mature audiences, those of you that appreciate a tale of sex, beauty, and crime.