The World of Ginger Fox


By Mike Baron and Mitch O’Connell (Comico)
ISBN: 0-938965-02-6

Let’s all pop back to the ever-so-now 1980s with this stylish and radically different kind of graphic novel that pretty much typified and encapsulated the dichotomies of the age of Big Hair and Brash Money.

Peppertree Studios used to be one of the biggest players in Hollywood, until the somber 1970s saw ill-conceived, big, worthy movies almost bankrupt the company. Now the dissolute boys-club of greedy old men who own the company are so desperate that they hire a woman to save or kill the studio. After all, they have nothing to lose…

Amidst a welter of rumour, innuendo and open hostility, Ginger Fox blows into town and into a storm of trouble as she drags the company kicking and screaming back towards profits and safety. Along the way she encounters psychotic, crazed art-house directors, rowdy martial-arts prima donnas, drugs and thugs and sabotage from within by two-faced back-stabbers who don’t like taking orders from a pretty young woman and especially not a single-mom, Hollywood outsider…

The tale takes a swift side-step into the weird – and lavishly violent – when a Martial Arts secret society threatens to kill anybody connected with the new movie that inadvertently reveals their sacred Negative Kung Fu technique to anybody and everybody with the price of a movie ticket.

Despite warnings from cops and Hong Kong action-star Jason Wu, Ginger refuses to worry – at least until the “accidents” start to happen and the bodies start to pile up. Meanwhile, one of her own directors is trying to oust her and Peppertree’s biggest remaining star is spiraling out of control on addictive binges…

This mélange of glamour, fashion, excess and sheer over-the-top style is an unbelievably heady and enticing brew, especially thanks to the sleek, beautiful, high-end art and design of O’Connell; a canny cultural scavenger whose slick blend of caricature, pop iconography and surreal whimsy elevate this tale to unprecedented heights of verve and dash.

Sexy, cinematically violent and wickedly tongue-in-cheek, this adult comics caper is markedly different from almost anything you’ve ever seen and thoroughly deserves another bite of the graphic novel cherry. If they’re bringing back the ‘80s, you’re going to need this to remind you that it wasn’t all dreadful…
Story © 1986 Mike Baron. Artwork © 1986 Mitch O’Connell. All rights reserved.