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    Reviews - Razor: Uncut - #18

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One of my favorites - Areala
This story has always stuck out in my mind ever since I read it years ago because it feels so different from the standard Hartsoe-plotted Razor tales of the past. Whether this is due to assistance from co-author Jeanty or just an evolution of Hartsoe's writing skills over the years, I don't know. What I do know is that it feels more authentic than your standard "tormented anti-heroine" plot.

I think this is due to the fact that Razor isn't the protagonist in this issue. She's present, she's still knocking around bad guys, but for once she's not the focus (and in a way she's nearly the antagonist). Presenting her from this angle lets us view her the way the rest of Queen City does: a random purveyor of violent justice who crosses lines the police can't or won't.

It also puts her in the position of trying to defend her "do as I say, not as I do" dogma, as she struggles to talk grieving officer Mason out of ruining his life and career. Make no mistake, she gives it her best shot. But the difference between Nicole Mitchell and Samuel Mason is that Nicole never gave up and never stopped fighting. Mason already has. The story closes as it opens, leaving us with the realization it couldn't have ended any other way. A top-notch one-shot story from a book that often tries too hard to wallow in depravity and self-pity.

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