I have to admit, I didn’t know about Black Mask’s successful Kickstarter for this project. I stumbled across it on a routine pilgrimage to my local comic book store. The cover caught my attention right away, and it came well-recommended from my comic book store girl (Yes, I have a comic book store girl. And she’s awesome.), so I picked it up. I didn’t know what to expect, but with an eye-catching cover like this, I was hopeful.
I was not disappointed. Liberator is good reading. Written by real-life dog rescuer Matt Miner and illustrated by Javier Aranda, we meet Damon Guerrero, barista by day, animal rescuer by night; we also meet Jeanette, an animal rights activist. Each has his and her own way of approaching the cause – Jeanette is out there, in the public eye, getting arrested for taking part on protests; Damon is much more of a vigilante. He likes the hands-on work of liberating animals from dog fighting operations and fur farms.
The images associated with Damon’s work are visceral and heartbreaking: a pit bull’s smiling face as Damon approaches him; the skinned carcasses of raccoons discarded after their fur has been harvested. Paired with Miner’s narrative: “If I can get away with this maybe I can get their faces out of my head. Maybe I can sleep”, reading this comic is like a gut punch that demands you take action. Maybe not extreme actions like the characters in the book, but the desire to do something to make this world a little better for everyone to share. Just the act of buying this book is doing something: 30% of the profits from this four-issue miniseries are going to animal rescue efforts. Buy the books, make life a little better for an animal who could certainly use it.
I’m glad I picked up this title. I’m interested in seeing where Damon and Jeanette go over the next four issues, and have added it to my pull list. Give it a shot.
Written by Matt Miner
Art by Javier Aranda
On Sale: 06/19/13
Diamond ID: APR130919