WHITE FOX #1 / Writer: Alyssa Wong / Artists: Kevin Libranda, Geoffo, & Ale Garza / Colorist: Israel Silva & Dono Sanchez-Almara with Protobunker / Letterer: VC’s Joe Sabino / Cover: Inhyuk Lee / Publisher: Marvel Comics / Publish Date: October 9, 2019.
White Fox Origin
Future Fights First: White Fox focuses on Ami Han, the new girl in school. She is trying to navigate high school and figure out who she is, who she should be friends with, and how to hide her true nature. She is the last of the kumiho, known as a mythical shape-shifting, fox-like monster. Her mother was killed for it, but maybe Ami can change people’s minds and be a good monster. Maybe she can even be a hero? You know her from Agents of Atlas and the Future Fight game, now get to know the origin story of the White Fox.
Don’t Judge A Book By Its Cover
Alyssa Wong creates a great backstory for the White Fox while also tying in the current run of Agents of Atlas. Through that tie-in we see what outsiders think of the shape-shifting kumiho and how they were wiped out. This prejudice causes Ami Han to hide her identity due to fear of being hunted down. Wong does a great job of presenting why you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. Not only is Ami viewed negatively due to her parentage, but her geek girlfriend has her parent’s mistake thrown in her face. Through this point, Wong tells us that you should not judge someone based on their nature or their parents. Every person can make their own decisions based on their own autonomy.
Wong also enables the reader to feel the insecurities Ami is feeling and, by comparison, how good it feels to be White Fox. The reader also gets to see White Fox in action. Her skill set, tracking abilities, and shifting are well thought out and tied to her animalistic instincts. Wong also creates a villain with similar traits, although this character ultimately falls flat. We never see him shift, although it seems he does. We never get any background on his mythical breed, other than his past interaction with Ami’s mother.
Why Split Stories, Marvel?
It would have been more beneficial to add more to this great story instead of adding the lackluster Future Avengers story at the end of the book. As said in other reviews, I don’t understand why Marvel insists on two stories per book for these Agents of Atlas solo books. At least the other books’ dual stories were both about the same character. This book cuts short the main event to add a new team, which deflates the momentum of the book. Not to mention the Future Avengers story seems remedial and an afterthought.
The artwork in this book is fun and well animated. Artists Kevin Libranda & Geoffo show the reader how physical White Fox is as well as Ami’s athletic high school experience. The depiction of Ami at all ages is particularly good, as was her shape shifting. They even achieve the fox-like cunning in White Fox’s smile at the end. This is well supported by Israel Silva’s coloring. It’s not easy to make white so deep and interesting, but Silva’s ability to shade, shift, and color White Fox gives her unexpected dimensions, especially when she is paired with the red of the villain.
Ale Garza’s art in the second story seems straight out of an anime cartoon. The faces are drawn similarly with different coloring, with facial features lacking depth. Dono Sanchez-Almara and Protobunker’s colors are bright and fun, adding the real draw to this story. That being said, the best art of White Fox is the cover done by Inhyuk Lee. The white hair and mask against the red lips of the beautifully drawn face is striking. She is not just a beauty though, as Lee shows us that this hero has claws. The cover is just gorgeous.
More White Fox, Please
Overall, I loved the White Fox story and wish there was more of it. Wong does a great job with making the character lovable and exciting. It’s a shame that second story had to be added to the end. I left the book more annoyed than I would have with just the White Fox story’s excitement. The art in the first section does a fantastic job of showing the fun of the White Fox shifting and I hope we get to see more of that in future books. I think this was a great origin for this character, and I hope Marvel decides to build her story further.
Verdict: 4 out of 5