Spying with Lana: Sweet Nothings
Staff: Sean Harrington
A surprisingly smartly written 18+ indie comic with some quality issues.
Oh good another 18+ comic. Today I’ll be spying on Spying With Lana: Sweet Nothings.
I’m pretty sure I’ll regret it, but hey- I give everything a chance.
Straight up, the art is good. For one we have a pretty realistic comic and the artist/writer (Sean Harrington) has a very good grasp of anatomy, even if it is the anatomy of a porn star. I gotta say though, when every shot of every character is kind of centered on their massive tits... it’s not really something that screams “awesome artistic direction” in my mind. Then again, this is an 18+ comic. There is also this really odd disconnect between the character's skin, the lineart, and the backgrounds.Like on page 7 (page 1 of the actual comic) the skin of the man yelling is drawn hyper realistic, the stroke is done with some rough tool, the suit he is wearing is another texture all together, and the background is non-existant. I have this weird suspicious that this guy is tracing stuff or just ripping pictures. Like the wall on the bottom of page 8 is from Google, but the panel above that is drawn. It’s SO weird. Like sometimes it is clearly drawn and sometimes it is clearly not. And when it is drawn there is this odd “manga” style that gets introduced every now and again that is another divergence from the art style. Maybe it is his style? Maybe it is some kind of artistic shortcut? I don’t know. Either way the meshing between all these styles really creates a very inconsistent tone.
The typography is not so good and a lot of care was taken in it. There is a minor rasterization/compression issue on the text (possibly on the whole comic) but that’s not much to complain about.
Ironically, I am going to say the story was actually pretty engaging. Like I went into this assuming we’d get a “pizza delivery” class porno story... but yeah, I was wrong. I sold it short. The basic premise is that a sexy spy tricks three people into giving up their components to a secret invention they were meant to be protecting. I mean there are tits every page or two and some sexy time, but... yeah. Decent. There was some clever line delivery, I actually got a few chuckled out of it and the characterization was pretty solid. If it wasn’t for the tits being shoved in my face every like 30 sec it would have been a solid normal comic, but it has the 18+ label to be honest it would have detracted from the humor. The excessive sex and titts actually kind of play to the kind of humor the comic is looking to portray.
So then there is this weird shift in quality on page 20. Rather than being drawn or use stock images we get a random low quality 3D image as the exterior of a house with some text that is either super compressed or low quality is superimposed over it. Really? I gave you credit for some solid art early on in this review, don’t make me regret it.
Anyway, in conclusion this is a smartly written 18+ comic that really is bogged down due to some poor choices. The artistic disconnect in styles is disconcerting, the compression issues are glaring, and the whole thing could have benefited from a serious upgrade. Otherwise, the writing was good, the plot was engaging, the characterizations were strong. Maybe I prejudged an 18+ indie comic but hey- I’m game to review anything and give it a fair chance.
Art: 2/10 (Weird clashing art styles. Generally good. Quality issues.)
Lettering: 4/10 (Solid with compression issues.)
Plot: 6/10 (Actually pretty solid.)
Novelty: 5/10 (A new story to me... and tits?)