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PREVIEW: 'BLACK [AF] DEVIL'S DYE' by Vita Ayala and Liana Kangas

 This latest BLACK [AF] collected mini-series is written by breakout star Vita Ayala ( New Mutants, X-Men: Children Of The Atom, Morbius, Bitch Planet, The Wilds ) and rising star artist Liana Kangas ( She Said Destroy ).   When a new drug called VANTA hits the streets, word is it's the hottest thing since Ecstacy. For regular people, it has all the highs and none of the lows of traditional drugs. There is some fine print, however - for empowered Black folks, the drug causes a total and violent loss of control. The Project sends Indigo to investigate, and it soon becomes apparent that this is more than just a new designer distraction for the masses. Indigo together with former Detective Ellen Waters race to find the source of the substance poisoning their people, before it's too late!   The superhero universe where only Black people have superpowers continues to expand, for the first time with a new creative team building onto the exciting world created by Kwanza Osajyefo, Tim

REVIEW: 'Hit-Girl: Season Two' #9 by Peter Milligan and Alison Sampson

HIT-GIRL'S IN MUMBAI. Mindy lands in India looking for a new mission and uncovers mutilated children forced to beg in the streets. Time for Hit-Girl to track down their gang master and serve justice. * New Story Arc.*

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Writer: Peter Milligan
Artist: Alison Sampson, Triona Farrell
Letters: Clem Robins
Design & Production: Melina Mikulic
Editor: Rachael Fulton
Publisher: Image Comics
Release Date: October 16, 2019
Cover Price: $3.99

Score: ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Mindy's world tour continues as she lands in India looking to sell her services and finds a bizarre underground crime ring. 

The nice thing about Image's rotating creative teams on 'Hit-Girl' is the new ways they integrate Mindy into unique situations based on her location. India, Mumbai in particular, is a vast and heavily populated place and culturally different than other parts of the world. There's always some trepidation reading a story about such a violently cartoonish character like Mindy in a foreign land. The fear is that stereotypes will emerge as not just the bad guys but regular citizens. Peter Milligan finds a fair balance between the obvious villains mutilating children and forcing them to beg on the streets to a spiritual group called the Hijras who are being terrorized by a local gang. 

I'm not familiar with Indian culture but it seems that Milligan has some knowledge that informs the dialogue and interactions between the victims and their tormentors. It's what gives this chapter in the 'Hit-Girl' series a fresh and intriguing look where the characters in Mumbai are given center stage and Mindy while still violent as ever, really is an interloper with good intentions. I guess that's how the road to hell is paved, historically speaking. 

The art by Alison Sampson and Triona Farrell is as unique as its setting. Sampson's attention to detail from ornate room designs to culturally appropriate attire is in-depth and intricate. It's all washed in Farrell's colorful palette that gives the entire thing a dreamlike aesthetic. It's gritty but surrealistic at times. 

'Hit-Girl: Season Two' #9 delivers an interesting installment this time in India. Mindy's services may not be welcomed by everyone but she can't look away at the disturbing crimes being committed. Milligan uses India as more than just an exotic locale but as a culturally relevant population with familiar but nuanced troubles. Sampson and Farrell create a visually arresting story that's vibrant and detailed. This new chapter lives up to the promise that went into allowing new creative teams to take Hit-Girl global. This is the one you can't miss.