REVIEW: ‘Black Cat Annual,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Black Cat Annual #1

Black Cat Annual #1 is published by Marvel Comics, written by Jed MacKay, art by Joey Vazquez and Juan Ferrayra, colors by Brian Reber, and letters by Ferran Delgado and Joe Caramagna. While on her way to a vacation, world-renowned cat-burglar Felicia Hardy is picked up by Korean spy/superhero White Fox. It seems White Fox has a hard mission coming up, and Black Cat may just be the wild card she needs to pull it off.

As part of the Infinite Destinies stories, I was surprised to see Black Cat becoming involved with the Infinity Stones, as such cosmic items are generally outside of her purview. However, now that I’ve read Black Cat Annual #1, I find myself even more confused by her involvement with the series, given the fact that, as far as I can tell, the Stones have no connection to Black Cat’s adventure whatsoever. This leaves me wondering why it is included as part of this event.

While the story may struggle to justify itself as part of a larger narrative, the tale contained within the book itself is a fun, entertaining romp that any fans of Black Cat should be pleased with. Writer MacKay delivers the title character with plenty of energy and smarts. Felicia carries the story well, which is important since she and White Fox are the only significant characters in Black Cat Annual #1.

But while Cat does hold the spotlight incredibly well here, Fox is allowed to play foil to Felicia quite nicely, thanks to MacKay’s writing. Fox delivers the all-too-serious government operative to Hardy’s carefree playfulness extremely well. The chemistry between the two characters lands with all the natural flow one could ask for.

The most interesting aspect of the mission itself comes from the numerous characters Black Cat Annual #1 gives readers a glimpse of. The Tiger Division, which White Fox leads, is made up of some interesting personalities that, after my brief exposure to them here, I’d be extremely curious about reading more about the team.

The art manages to do a good job of delivering the story’s light-hearted adventure well. Artist Vazquez helps the writing deliver Felicia’s antagonizing playful personality wonderfully. Everything from her smirk to her body language reinforces how laid back she remains throughout the book’s story.

The upbeat tempo of the book is further delivered to the reader through colorist Reber’s bright color choices. There are numerous energy effects in Black Cat Annual #1 that pop off the page thanks to Reber’s bold color usage.

Rounding out the presentation of Black Cat’s adventure is Delgado’s letters. Delgado brings a last bit of energy to the book’s narrative thanks to the choice of font. By going with something a bit less uniform in design than the industry standard, Delgado brings the mayhem in the panels into the word boxes as well. This makes the dialogue’s look feel in sync with the story.

As with the other entries in the Infinite Destinies stories, this book has a secondary story that continues to follow Nick Fury as he attempts to get a handle on the unfolding situation with the Stones.

For the most part, this brief tale follows a winding internal monologue of Fury’s as he stresses over the unpredictability of the unfolding situation. Writer MacKay deliveries Fury’s anxieties well, and the character’s strained mental state is further reinforced by artist Ferrayra’s depiction of the spymaster.

Taking it all together, Black Cat Annual #1’s ability to satisfy readers feels like it will be largely dependent on what the reader is looking for. If they come seeking a fun adventure featuring the charming cat burglar whose name is on the cover, I think there is little chance of disappointment. On the other hand, if they bought the book hoping for a meaningful continuation of the storyline that the same cover advertises, they will likely be disappointed.

Black Cat Annual #1 is available now wherever comics are sold.

 

Black Cat Annual #1
3.5

TL;DR

Taking it all together, Black Cat Annual #1’s ability to satisfy readers feels like it will be largely dependent on what the reader is looking for. If they come seeking a fun adventure featuring the charming cat burglar whose name is on the cover, I think there is little chance of disappointment. On the other hand, if they bought the book hoping for a meaningful continuation of the storyline that the same cover advertises, they will likely be disappointed.