Boston Metaphysical Society: The Spirit of Rebellion
Written and Created by Madeleine Holly-Rosing
Cover, Art, Inking and Coloring by Gwynn Tavares
Lettering by Troy Peteri
Character Portrait by Gwynn Tavares
Additional Art by Tom Brown and Sophie Pfrotzschner
If there was one particular genre of fiction I find to be versatile and never lacking for interesting characters it would be historical fiction. Not only is it ripe with characters to pluck but it’s easy to do within any particular time frame. Boston Metaphysical Society is set in the late 1800’s, a time I find certainly very interesting in US history, and it follows the exploits of Caitlin O’Sullivan a medium and spirit photographer. I’ve reviewed the previous issues of Boston Metaphysical Society and Spirit of Rebellion is a continuation from the previous installments.
As I said, Boston Metaphysical Society is set in the late 1800’s and one of the most exciting things about Holly-Rosing’s writing is the level of knowledge and realism she brings to the story and how spot on it is with the time frame. Holly-Rosing gives subtle nods to the time frame by showing the casual sexism and racism as they were displayed during this time and how they were ingrained in society, but she does it in a way as to not demean the people any further than needed and because she writes the characters with such great personal power it’s almost as if the discrimination is another antagonist, but one that is easily thwarted. Holly-Rosing’s writing style is so matter of fact, but also gives proper credit to societal norms, making it just part of the quick wit and thinking of protagonists like Caitlin as they fight the good fight. It’s more than just the acknowledgment of such things it’s the way Holly-Rosing intertwines it into her writing with such ease, it shows her versatility as a writer as well as her vast knowledge of history. This is technically a one shot or a stand alone from the series so it’s a great stand alone story but it also flows quite well with the previous issues. In this issue Caitlin suffers some unforeseen consequences after saving Boston from shifters and finds herself in Philadelphia where she continues with being a medium and an all around badass lady. Of course things happen and Caitlin gets involved in more ghostly shenanigans.
The art throughout the entire book is completely consistent and lovely throughout. We as readers have been lucky to have had Tavares and the consistency she brings and it makes the comics that much better. The style is a beautiful realism that’s set off by the pastel color palette and completely suits the writing style and time frame of the 1800’s. As much as I enjoy the art style of Tavares what really makes this comic unique is the letters of Peteri. Peteri uses colors inside of the word balloons and it works perfectly with the colors. It’s a brilliant move and it fits like a puzzle piece, it makes the comic look so much better, and it gives it the final piece it needs.