For a few years now, the three-piece creative team of Brendan Stewart, Cameron Fletcher and Babs Tarr have brought a definitive modern style to the already eclectic stable of popular creators. Borrowing from the cyberpunk genre for many of their narrative elements, their stories tend to focus on the dark, even uncomfortable side of interpersonal relationships, with Tarr and Stewart’s soft linework adding a light aesthetic.

MOTOR CRUSH #7 is the continuation of one of their first original projects together. The book has mixed the classic Stewart, Fletcher and Tarr style with dystopian themes of super drugs and overarching authorities, a trope that doesn’t seem tired here because of the team’s emphasis on relationships first. There is a big bad and a big problem for protagonist Domino Swift to solve, but the bulk of her issues now consist of ex-girlfriends and other sins of the past.

Domino’s current character dynamic was set up in the book’s first arc, where a ovedose of the drug Crush caused her to travel two years into the future (it’s comics, you don’t need to know how) MOTOR CRUSH #7 is about Domino attempting to get her old life back, and the woman once closest to her wanting to help, despite having already moved on. Even if you haven’t been following Domino’s adventure to this point, the issue is relatable to anybody who has lost someone and tried to act like the time they lost didn’t happen, or like they didn’t want it to happen, only to discover that the other party was much more willing to live in reality. The issue is uncomfortable in a good way, without abandon or remorse. Domino doesn’t get what she wants, but everybody gets the best they can get given the circumstance.

As a tool for coping, Domino’s growth in this issue is of the kind many of the readers will likely relate to. It’s a technique Joss Whedon used to great effect in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and anybody who’s sick of happy endings, or at least characters who at the end of the day get what they want because they’re the hero, will likely leave this book satisfied. Nobody comes off as perfect, and in fact everybody seems a little selfish, and by the final pages, when the focus begins to shift back to the larger drama of villains and street gangs, we get the feeling that Domino will be ok.

Story: Brenden Fletcher, Cameron Stewart, Babs Tarr
Art: Babs Tarr, Jake Wyatt
Cover: Babs Tarr

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