Title: Red Light #1
Publisher: AWA Studios
Writer: Sarah Cho
Artist: Priscilla Petraites
Colors: Miroslav Mrva
Letters: Sal Cipriano
Red Light #1 from AWA Studios follows the story of Lacy, an A.I. sex worker in the Red Light District. Lacy was created by Mister, her master. Mister did something different with Lacy, though. He gave her empathy.
In issue #1, Lacy celebrates her birthday with a client. She claims that he’s one of the good ones even though he’s so rough with her that he dislocates her arm. She tells her mechanic, Benson, that it’s not a big deal. Benson is worried about Lacy because she can feel pain. Do her clients even know this? Would it matter?
So far, it feels like the biggest question of Red Light is why you would make an A.I. sex worker have pain receptors and empathy. What is the point of making her as close to human as possible but then not treating her as such? Mister attempts to treat her well. He invites her to stay the night with him. He allows Lacy to eat dinner with him. It feels like he’s trying to fill some sort of void with Lacy.
Meanwhile, Lacy is curious. She likes staying with Mister because she gets a view of the outside world. Day and night, she lives in her room, never leaving the confines of the compound. She’s clearly yearning for more, but it isn’t until she meets someone else that she is determined to leave. Lacy meets Natalie, an eleven year old human, who has also never left the compound. Surprisingly enough, Natalie has the same birthday as Lacy. Lacy remembers that Mister’s wife died in an accident. Is Natalie his daughter? Was Lacy created as a fill in for his wife? Why do they have the same birthday?
So far, I’m enjoying Red Light. You really feel for Lacy. It doesn’t matter that she’s an A.I. She has empathy. She feels pain. If the intent was to make her as human as possible, then should she be able to live as a human does? I’m curious to explore more of this world and to see if Lacy and Natalie escape Mister’s compound. Red Light is planned for four issues, and issue #1 is in stores now.