Spy Seal #1

by Olivier Roth on August 16, 2017

Spy Seal #1

Story/Art by: Rich Tomasso


From the moment I saw this comic, I was pretty sure I was going to at least love the art in Spy Seal #1. Growing up, I was a big fan of French and Belgian comics, think Asterix and Obelix, Spirou and Fantasio, and Tomasso’s Spy Seal just screams of having the same esthetic - the opening title page is even lifted from European-style comics. The entire presentation feels fresh in today’s North American comic landscape and made me want to read it more. Plus, anthropomorphized characters can sometimes be quite fun.


As for the story, Tomasso begins with our titular hero Malcolm - we only learn his name about half-way through the issue, and his friend Sylvia discussing current events in her artist’s studio. Both decide to attend a local art show to partake in the free food. There, Malcolm meets a buxom Russian bunny and this is where the story really kicks off. While watching a modern dance performance, an attempt is made on the bunny’s life and Malcolm jumps to her rescue, chasing down the perpetrator as he flees the scene. We learn that two of the witnesses of Malcolm’s bravery work for M-6 and without giving too much of the story away, proceed to make him a proposition after another incident takes places: become a spy for their organization!


Tomasso pulls double-duty as he is also the artist on this book and his style is very reminiscent of old European comic books from my childhood. He uses very clean lines and a muted colour palette which lends itself greatly to the style he is going for. I also enjoy the classic panel structure - nothing crazy is needed for the story to be effective.


We are also treated to a backup story written and drawn by Joey Weiser called Ninja Fukuroh. It’s a cute little story about a ninja owl who is madly in love with the lady of the land. It’s a nice little compliment to the main story, adding a bit of value to the comic.

For a first issue, Spy Seal #1 was definitely a fun read that brought me back to my childhood. As with good debut issues, it gave us a good primer for Malcolm’s world and gave us enough to want to come back for more.

Our Score:


A Look Inside