Title: Steed And Mrs. Peel
Date: August 2012
Publisher: Boom! Studios
Writer: Mark Waid
Artist: Steve Bryant
Colorist: Ron Riley
Letterer: Steve Wands
Cover: Joshua Covey, Blond
Editor: Matt Gagnon, Chris Rosa
The A-word is nowhere to be found in this book, but this is a new adventure featuring characters from a certain classic British TV show that happens to share its title with a certain Marvel Comics property.
Personally, I'm a huge fan of the show, which makes this one of the very, very few times that I will say that about a TV adaptation. So I went into this with a lot of trepidation, and the cover did not help. Absolutely awful (apparently, there are actually 8 variant covers, this was version B; I haven't seen any of the others, but they would have a hard time being much worse).
Fortunately, the book itself proved to be pretty good.
The interplay between Patrick MacNee and Diana Rigg on the show was consistently brilliant, and definitely a challenge to translate into the comic medium. Writer Mark Waid did about as good a job as could be done, with several scenes that were absolutely spot-on. He also got a lot of the show's style right. The situations are quirky. The villains are not always entirely competent, but their schemes are convoluted to near-ridiculousness.
Steve Bryant's interior art was good. He doesn't always capture Emma's easy grace, but that's more a function of the difficulty of using images of real actors.
Fight scenes are handled nicely with good attention to the details of the show's choreography. Loved the bit where a villain is dispatched by a combination of (judo!) chop from Emma and being tripped up by the handle of Steed's umbrella. Classic. Emma overpowering and swapping clothes with a henchwoman was pretty much pure fanservice. That is not a bad thing.
The story stands alone, but ends with a brief lead-in to the ongoing series.
About as good as I could have hoped for. Mr. Steed and Mrs. Peel, you were most definitely needed.
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