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Peacock Punks

peacockpunksmallDale Lazarov
Mauro Mariotti
Janos Janecki
$13.80

What do you do on a night of torrential rain? Are you sensible and safe and stay indoors binging on Netflix or do you venture out into the elements? Taking a chance (and being rewarded) is the premise of Peacock Punks from writer Dale Lazarov and artist Mauro Mariotti. The alliterative title suggests this quintet of men are unique and colorful and visually pleasing like the bird’s feathers.

Mariotti brings Lazarov’s nocturnal fantasia to life by descriptively creating a distinct sense of place for these frolicksome men. The men are all evocatively muscular and sexy and there’s a good variation of facial and body hair and other physical characteristics. They’re all really well endowed too since this is erotic fantasy, though not extreme enough as to be unbelievable. Lazarov’s stories may be fictional but he also wants to convey a sense of reality so readers like you and me can more easily — ahem — insert themselves into the story. Mariotti is top notch with figural rendering from faces, expressions, body language, gestures to conveying how the human body looks from different vantage points. Of course, comics are a visual medium typically telling stories of people interacting with each other. A script will be adversely affected no matter how good it is if the artist fails to draw people engaging one another. Exponentially so if the comic in question is erotic and sexual. Thankfully Mariotti excels at creating tangled masses of titillating torsos.

Lazarov has often mentioned his intent of being sex positive with his work. In general I think that’s a positive attitude to have whether in one’s personal and sexual relationships or when incorporating sexuality in one’s art and writing. What I appreciate most is Lazaorov’s choice here to relay that message with humor and playfulness with these characters, thereby giving them personalities.

Janos Janecki has achieved gorgeous coloring and a sense of atmosphere throughout the story with limited color palettes in each scene. The muted yellows and greens that convincingly depict stormy weather in the opening sequence are brightened in the penultimate panel to underscore a sense of joy the central character has after the experience. Cool blues and purple dominate the nightclub scene, subduing the energy of the band and the crowd until a pop of light hints at sexual tension. Similarly, restrained blues contrast with the skin tones of the men during the sex scene. There are a handful of bonus pin up style pages rounding out the book in which Janecki shows he’s adept with vibrant colors as well.

Purchase Peacock Punks in digital format only from Selz.

May 1, 2015
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