Well, part of my wish comes true: Mark gets to work for another editor of another magazine. Glad to see Rivera taking advantage of the publishing empire she has envisioned. So, Rafael Suave? Clearly, a poser, but the jury is out on his other bona fides. I’m not sure if the magazine is called “Fish Magazine” or “Fish Magazine Hot Catch”; otherwise, what the hell does “Hot Catch” mean? Shouldn’t it be more like Catch Hot Fish Magazine? I don’t get it. Anybody? Anybody?
Well, I don’t think I need to go too far out on a limb and suggest that, based on Mark’s over-reactive response in panel 4, Mark might be getting set up once again for some oddball assignment. But, hey…this time it is a fishing magazine…I think. And maybe Rafael is an actual angler. No reason to presume not, even if he’s not wearing a hat covered in trout lures and sitting in a boat. As with Amy Lee, I’m thinking “editor” means “Editor in Chief”, so Mark is getting his assignment straight from the top, not some feature editor.
Back in October 2021, Mark’s appearance when he got his first assignment from Amy Lee of Teen Girl Sparkle was fresh and positive. The drawing was more refined in its treatment of line, contours and color. Compare it with panel 4 today, and Mark looks like he is forcing himself to be positive. The face looks frazzled; the expression looks happy and positive, but the eyes appear worn out, as if he’s just rolling with the conversation. Okay, maybe I’m reading too much into a single panel here. And maybe it’s just because the more refined drawing of Mark from last year makes the current version of Mark look sketchier and flatter.
And check out the image of Mark in panel 1. It has that simplistic, heavy black line and shape that reminds me of discount animated cartoons; maybe even something like Clutch Cargo, minus the super-imposed human lips. Ah, it would be great to see Rivera return to the earlier version of drawing Mark we see here.
In any event, looks like we’re heading into story number three. I’m hoping this will be an assignment truly in Mark’s wheelhouse, where he can make use of his well-honed skills. Mark deserves a break, don’t you think? And yeah, maybe Mark will get some time to actually use his two fists of justice, in addition to whatever other skills he needs to employ. Maybe even take some pictures, once in awhile?