Wonderous: The Adventures of Claire Sinclair

Here’s another interesting early title from Lion Forge, originally launched back in 2013 when they were still an independent digital publisher. This 8-issue series tells the story of a new superhero, Claire Sinclair. The twist here is that Claire Sinclair is a real person. She’s a pinup model, and former Playboy Playmate, in fact, she was Playmate of The Year in 2011. So to promote the book, she would also cosplay at conventions as her own comic-book character. How cool is that?

In 2014 all 8 issues were first collected into one volume, which is what I bought and am reviewing today. Written by Joelle Sellner, this book takes place in Los Angeles, where Claire is portrayed as a young broke community college student, living with her roommate and long-time friend Jason, who is an aspiring video game designer. To earn money Claire models as Snow White on Hollywood Blvd., taking pictures with tourists. But when she smacks a kid who tries to cop a feel, she gets fired. Desperate to earn money for school and to pay her rent, she volunteers for a research study where she gets injected with some new medical drug.

In the kind of mix-up that can only happen in a comic book, the drug she’s given gets mixed with some kind of radioactive material, and soon after her first injection Claire starts developing a few superpowers. It starts off innocent enough when she starts acing her tests in school, despite barely studying, realizing that she now has a photographic memory. She also gets telekinesis, enabling her to move objects with her mind, and her body becomes near indestructible, she’s bullet-proof (although heat still hurts her) and can survive falling from great heights. Jason, being the stereotypical chubby nerd that he is, suggests Claire should use her powers to become a superhero,  an idea she isn’t too receptive of at first. But when the news reports of a man robbing a bank with the ability to shoot powerful heat lasers from his eyes, Claire figures at least if she captures him she may get a reward. So with Jason’s help in designing a costume, both for her and himself, as Clarie insists that he come along with her as her sidekick, Claires’s crimefighting career begins. And hilarity ensues.

The story gets more complicated as it goes on. It turns out that the villain is Claire’s ex-boyfriend Victor. He had also signed up for the experiment, and that’s how he got his laser vision. And unlike Claire, he’s determined to use his powers for evil. He even starts recruiting some of the other test subjects, including a man who can make people immobile with his mind, and a woman who can fly, all for some major nefarious scheme, and he tries to get Claire to join him. And not just as supervillains, he wants her back as his girlfriend again too, and he’s not against using threats to get what he wants. The drama escalates with several surprising twists and turns, with the threat increasing until the fate of the entire planet Earth is at stake.

Sellner’s written a fun story here that doesn’t take it too seriously, but also doesn’t devolve into slapstick. It feels a little bit like a classic Archie Comics story, but with superpowers. And it’s not just a superhero story, it’s also a story about relationships. Victor is the typical toxic ex that you know is no good for you, but you still find yourself attracted to him. This is probably something many young women like Claire could relate to. Claire is written as a good-natured girl, just trying to get through life. She’s a committed environmentalist, which is a major factor in this story. The interactions between her and Jason are also a highlight of this series, as they work on being a superhero team, which affects their friendship in some surprising ways.

And the artwork is by Rick Burchett, a veteran comic-book artist who brings his A-game to every page. Chacebook rating: FIVE STARS

P.S. and check out Claire on her ONLYFANS page.

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