Saturday, September 10, 2005

Favorite Female Characters #10: Francine & Katchoo

SIP Vol 3 17
Originally uploaded by Heidi Meeley.
Strangers in Paradise is one of those comic books that suck you in head first. It is so full of emotion and great characterization that once you have started reading it, you have to get every issue. It happened that way for me and for many other people I have talked to.

Creator Terry Moore has created two of the most incredible characters in comicdom that don't wear spandex on a regular basis. Francine and Katchoo are polar opposites whose friendship has always been the one constant in their lives. They are surrounded by a fantastice supporting cast, but it is their relationship and lives that the book revolves around.

Busty and fun loving, but with a sensitive side, Francine is the girl that guys can't take their eyes off. She fights her weight, and stress just exaberates it. Readers can guage how Francine's love life is going by her ever changing figure. Her big brown eyes and people-pleasing ways set her apart from other girls.

Katchoo is a scrapper from the streets. Brought up in a single parent home, Katchoo left for the streets of LA in her teenage years after an unspeakable incident with one of her mother's "friends". Katchoo has dabbled in the sinful side of life and made her way back to Francine for a second chance at normalcy. Her street sharpness and sarcasm mask a vulnerable woman looking for a lasting love. Katchoo is also impossibly petite and cute, but she tries to overcompensate by being the toughest chick around.

These two ladies have suffered physically and emotionally because of the past, and as they look into the future there is a great uncertainty. Circumstances have torn them apart, but it is inevitable that they will find their way back to each other. I wouldn't dare stereotype their relationship in any way because it is so unique and special.

Go pick up Strangers in Paradise Volume 1 trade paperback to see what I mean. There you meet the girls and male cast members Freddie and David. The interpersonal relationships and resulting fall out will make you want to go out and get your hands on the other 14 trades that are out there. There is also the pocket SIP, which is smaller and features more story for the price. It is not only economical, but a must have.

I can't recommend Strangers in Paradise enough. If you have a woman friend who thinks comics are a child's game, hook her up with SIP today. It isn't aimed at comic book readers- it is aimed at all types of folks.

Francine and Katchoo have made me laugh and cry at the same time. They are the cream of the crop in female characters. By the time you have read their story, you will come to care for them like I have. Highest recommendation here, folks.

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