Fraction and Javier Pulido give Kate the spotlight, setting her up on her own in Los Angeles. Fair warning, there’s an amazing Caddyshack reference and a cute “Rockford Files” one too. I saw the latter coming, but the Caddyshack thing? Fraction’s beautifully muted about it.
Speaking of beautiful, Pulido has a fantastic style for the annual. A lot of the panels are silhouettes, giving the story an almost comic strip feel, focusing the reader’s attention on the dialogue, but also the scenery. There’s great scenery here. There’s another device where Fraction tells Kate’s internal monologue in these little thought boxes, complete with Pulido illustrating her internal expression at the thoughts.
The story itself involves Madame Masque out for revenge and Kate having to grow up fast. The two women play quite well off each other.
It’s a shame Fraction’s experiments with the regular series aren’t as successful as this annual.
West Coast Avenger; writer, Matt Fraction; artist, Javier Pulido; colorist, Matt Hollingsworth; letterer, Clayton Cowles; editors, Tom Brennan and Stephen Wacker; publisher, Marvel Comics.