Cooler than ThouCasanova
is a comic book series written by Matt Fraction with art by (so far) Gabriel Ba and his brother Fabio Moon. Inspired by Jerry Cornelius
, Danger: Diabolik
, Nick Fury: Agent of SHIELD
and, of course, James Bond
, it tells a trippy tale of spies, flying cars, crazy gadgets, bizarre psychic powers and mind-upgrading drugs. Each story arc is named after one of the Seven Deadly Sins
. As of June 2012, Luxuria
are complete with the next arc titled Acedia
The eponymous lead is a skilled yet thoroughly sybaritic cat-burglar-for-hire whose dad, Cornelius Quinn, happens to run E.M.P.I.R.E., the world's premier international security organization.
Let me rephrase.
Casanova Quinn is, among other things, The Most Interesting Man in the World
- He steals — and has sex with — at least one smoking hot robot woman.
- He wins a psychic duel with what appear to be three Buddhist monks fused into a single wad.
- He dives out of a flying helicasino ...
- ... while shooting at it ...
- ... and into a parallel reality where he is his own Evil Twin ...
- ... where he does it all again, only better.
- He is cooler than you'd ever even want to be.
And that's just the first issue!
These tropes feature in his life:
Psychic combat at dawn ... because The Genre Demands It!
- Animal Motifs: Everyone with psychic powers has a "psychomanifest" represented by one animal or another. Casanova had spiders for a while, then upgraded to crows via some really great drugs. Zephyr has snakes.
- Artificial Human/Robot Girl: Ruby Seychelle, Ruby Berserko. Sabine Seychelle does good work.
- Awesome McCoolname: Practically everybody.
- Bandage Mummy: Newman Xeno
- Cooper Caine, Fashion Photographer to the Stars, in an in-universe homage to Newman Xeno.
- Big Bad: Newman Xeno
- Bi the Way: Casanova Quinn
- Brain Uploading: Tragically and painfully subverted.
- Break the Cutie: Kaito in Casanova: Gula.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall
- Brother-Sister Incest: Heavily implied in the Luxuria, between Casanova and Zephyr.
- The Casanova: It's right there in the title.
- Dark Action Girl: Zephyr Quinn, period.
- Double Agent
- The Dragon: Zephyr Quinn to Newman Xeno - or is she?
- Easy Sex Change: Casanova has one of these in the Gula arc, to pretend to be his sister to infiltrate the Xeno's latest plan and at the end get changed back.
- Escape Artist/Stage Magician: David X before he leveled up.
- Enlightenment Superpowers: David X meditated his way into superhumanity.
- Evil Minions: Ever meet anyone that went to those technical schools that advertise on late night TV. You know — the "colleges" that exist in mini-malls? Of course not. Anybody who went to those gets recruited into agencies like W.A.S.T.E. and E.M.P.I.R.E. I mean — ever wondered where those jumpsuit guys come from? The killer robot fuelers, the giant drill runners, the spooky laser operators? Colleges from the TV.
- Evil Only Has to Win Once: The reasoning for the dimension hopping missions in Avarita, and their original mandate of destroying entire universes before they found Newman Xeno's true identity was that as long as a Newman Xeno existed in the multiverse they could/would damage it beyond repair.
- Evil Twin: Casanova is the evil twin replacing his dead good twin.
- Interestingly, one of the Quinn siblings is this to the other. In the original universe, Cass was the evil one whereas Zeph was the good one. In the universe Cass currently inhabits, Zeph was the evil one, Cass was the good one before he was killed, making one universe with two evil twins.
- Expy: Sabine Seychelle is totally a grown-up Chaotic Neutral Jonny Quest according to Word of God (backmatter of Casanova Luxuria #4).
- First-Person Smartass
- From Nobody to Nightmare: Casanova Avarita #1 suggests this as Newman Xeno's origin story.
- Fun with Acronyms: What does W.A.S.T.E. stand for again?
- Gentleman Thief: Casanova until the events of the first issue. Thereafter, he trades that in for the life of a dimension-hopping superspy.
- Genre Throwback: To pretty much all of sixties pop culture.
- A God Am I: David X, right until he got tased in the brains by Casanova.
- Gonk/Ugly Cute: Fabula Berserko, Ruby Berserko.
- Guns Akimbo: All the time! Even Newman Xeno does it.
- Heel-Face Revolving Door: Pretty much the whole cast at one point switches sides except for Cornelius Quinn.
- Hidden Elf Village: Modified with shades of Advanced Ancient Acropolis. The people of Coldheart Island present themselves to the world as an exaggerated stereotype of spear-chucking bone-through-the-nose savages. In reality, they are an ultra-advanced tribe of psychic superbeings who can read DVDs with the naked eye, see through cloaking devices like they aren't even there and trap our protagonist between comicbook panels.
- Human Notepad: Teen Age Music International, a girl band of pop star assassins, are invisibly tattooed with the map to Sabine Seychelle's money.
- Humongous Mecha: Kaito Best's Mad Scientist parents left him one. After Luxuria he, Casanova and their whole crew live inside its head.
- Invisibility Cloak: "Lightbender" suits are used a few times in the series.
- Jumped at the Call: Kaito's, like, just so happy to be there, man.
- Ki Attacks: Kaito Best is an insanely skilled martial artist.
- Lovable Rogue: Casanova, of course.
- Man of Wealth and Taste: Xeno is a rare combination of this trope and Sophisticated as Hell.
- Messiah Creep: Cass's major Character Development.
- Metafiction: Because the Genre Demands It!
- The Mole: McShane, in a shocking twist!
- Money Fetish: Xeno apparently likes to have sex on bloodstained piles of money.
- The Multiverse: The Multi-Quintessence in this case. Same thing.
- Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot
- Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: David X and his Empire of Zen Crime in Gula are described thusly: Itís like crime, only thereíre no victims, and really, no crimes. It really just spreads a general sense of unrest.
- Psychic Powers: Casanova dismantles a foe's gun with his spiders and shreds a couple of Xeno's Mooks with his crow upgrade.
- Zephyr is able to recon an entire building with her psycho-manifested snakes — without leaving her chair.
- Ridiculously Human Robot: Sabine Seychelle's specialty. Ruby Seychelle herself.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Kaito teams up with Xeno to get his revenge for Ruby on the Quinns.
- Robosexual: McShane and Ruby Berserko, Kaito and Ruby Seychelle.
- Rule of Cool: Every page, every issue, every story arc, all of it.
- Sexbot: Sabine Seychelle's other specialty.
- Sharp-Dressed Man
- Shout-Out: Ice-T, The New Pornographers, Thomas Pynchon, Films of the 1960s and much much more.
- Skilled, but NaÔve: Kaito in his first appearance. By the Gula story arc, he had gained a lot more experience.
- Sophisticated as Hell
- Spy Fiction: Martini-and-Absinthe-flavoured
- Spy Versus Spy: All over the place.
- Time Travel: Sasa Lisi and that leads to...
- Time Travel Romance: Between Casanova and Sasa Lisi.
- Triang Relations: During the Avarita arc, Casanova starts one with Sasa Lisi and Luther Desmond Diamond
- Trippy Finale Syndrome: Avarita's ending
- Unwitting Pawn: Casanova uses a young secretary in the first issue.
- Your Universe or Mine?