New Romancer by Brett Parson, Peter Milligan
Series: New Romancer #1
Published by Vertigo on August 23rd 2016
Genres: Graphic Novel, Love & Romance, Occult & Supernatural, Science Fiction, Time Travel
Source: Personal Copy
Reviewed by: Kim
Fired from a cushy job in Silicon Valley, Lexy becomes a coder for New Romancer, an Internet-dating app that's seen better days. To create fake profiles, she plunders characteristics from history's most notorious lovers. Using little-known writings by Ada Lovelace, the world's first computer programmer, Lexy pushes the boundaries of coding and accidentally unleashes history's greatest lover: Lord Byron.
Online dating meets courtly love in this paranormal rom-com by Vertigo veteran writer Peter Milligan and rising art-star Brett Parson (Tank Girl).
Collects NEW ROMANCER #1-6.
We’re supposed to feel for the heroine of NEW ROMANCER; she’s been fired from her job, works for a tiny matchmaking site that is going out of business, and she’s a giant fan of classical literature. Unfortunately for us, she was fired for stealing important assets and messing up experiments, she’s not serious about her current job, and her infatuation with dead writers keeps her from seeing the potential in people in front of her.
Readers are supposed to be shocked that Lord Byron and Cassanova, when digitally inserted into modern bodies, aren’t quite as charming as their writing made them out to be. But any lit geek knows that most of these romantic writers weren’t very nice people. Still, there’s no reason to be treated to Byron farting while proposing “rutting” with our heroine. Gross.
For a book that features scientists and programmers, the technology makes no sense. It’s never explained except for telling us that Lexy is a genius and it works through “algorithms”. Casanova then hijacks the algorithms (somehow) to hypnotize people… I think? If they can create humans from scratch, there should be larger philosophical issues at play. Do they actually have consciousness? Can they actually make choices?
Greedy science and romantic hearts replaced any real character motivation, and the final showdown between Casanova and Lexy isn’t solved because of her brains to override his hypnosis, she just threatens to put his penis through a meat grinder. She’s as much of a bully as Byron is.
There were a few almost-funny moments, but overall this was a confusing mess with pretty art. This book is not for lovers of romance, of Byron, or of graphic novels in general. I don’t know who this book’s target audience is.More Reviews: