Writer’s Commentary: Katana Collins Talks Us Through Corporate Thriller ‘Cherish’ #2

by Olly MacNamee

Once again we have an exclusive writer’s commentary to share with you courtesy of our goo friends at Dynamite Comics. This time it’s a return guest; best-selling author Katana Collins discussing Cherish #2, out now from Dynamite.

[+++ WARNING: Possible spoilers! Buy and read Cherish #2 then return here for some awesome commentary! +++]

Hey friends! I’m so excited that Cherish #2 is out! I trust by now that you’ve read through it, so nothing I talk about will spoil the story… but just in case you haven’t read it yet, pause reading this article now! Consider this your warning… spoilers are coming! But with those spoilers, you’ll also get quotes, inspirations, inside jokes, Easter eggs, etc.


One of things Dynamite really nails best is the cover process! We have SO many great artists who contributed to the variants without going TOO overboard and having twenty different ones to choose from!

With issue 2, we had Brett Booth, Eric Canete, and Soo Lee return but we also had an incredible addition with Ben Templesmith!

I literally couldn’t choose my favorite even if you asked me (not that you are!).

They really didn’t need much (if any) input from me. When you have such talented artists on a book, the best thing the writer can do is sit back and lift their hands from it. Let the talented people do what they do best!


You’ll notice that every issue begins with a quote about revenge. I had NO idea there were so many good quotes out there. I literally had a hard time narrowing down which ones I wanted to use!

So anyway, page one of issue two picks up just about right where we left off in issue one! Cherish is coming to and realizes she’s in a stranger’s house. But not just any stranger… the man who blew up the deal with the Russian mob.

This is our introduction to Garrett who (you’ll come to learn) is a key player in not only the story, but also Cherish’s childhood, too.

And just before the page turn, we’re reminded of Cherish’s one-track mind. Revenge. And she’s mad… mad that this man stole that from her. 

And once you turn the page…


BAM! We’re back into the action!

Many of you know that I’m married to Sean Murphy and starting each issue with some sort of action is a tactic he has really drilled into me. Cliffhangers, action, and poignancy (or heart). Every issue needs all three.

As a romance author, I have the heart writing down for sure. But not always the action.

The other fun thing you get to learn about Garrett here? He can really kick some ass!


We get a quick flashback here and see that Garrett is the one who not only helped Chaya and Cherish escape when she was a little girl, but that he also orchestrated faking her death to help her fly under the radar.

That same night, she had a little cut on her face where the bullet that killed her father had grazed her cheek…

And Garrett recognized the scar on her face, knowing it was Cherish immediately.

Not only that, but we learn that Cherish has an ally in her revenge plot if she wants it…

But of course, our Cherish girl works alone. Or at least, mostly alone, with good ol’ Chaya in her ear!

FUN FACT: If you go back to issue 1, you can see Garrett in the background of some panels at Unicon when Cherish starts her first day of work!


This might be my favorite page of this issue! It’s such a cool shot and beautiful splash image. I knew in my head how I wanted this to look and Gabriel just nailed the art!


On page 5, we’ve skipped to a conversation between Valerie end maybe one of the worst guys I’ve ever written about… Warner. We already knew from issue one that Valerie was in on the fraud that the realtor Rachel had been helping with at Unicon. But we also now learn that someone at the company has been embezzling. And Valerie not only doesn’t have a conscience about Rachel’s death, but she’ll stop at nothing to find out who is stealing from her company.

PAGES 6 & 7

We have another quick, but cute encounter between Connor and Cherish here… or as he knows her, Amelia. And he catches her eavesdropping on the meeting with Valerie and Warner. 

No one has really ever been able to sneak up on Cherish prior to Connor, and she finally learns why… He has Unicon tech shoes that muffle sound. 

Instantly, Cherish wants a pair for herself.

Now, I am a bit of a shoe aficionado myself. I love shoes. I have a lot of shoes. So even though I wrote this as a quick little nod to some of the cool tech that the company does, I couldn’t resist featuring a pair of cool shoes for Cherish! Shoes that not only does she want for the technology, but she also wants them to be cute.

Reluctantly, Cherish agrees to go on a date with Connor… but only because there is a party happening at his mother’s house that same night.

After learning Cherish hasn’t yet met her new boss, Connor brings her in to his office. Interrupting the meeting between his mother and Warner.

We see another quick but important flashback showing that not only has Cherish met Warner before, but he was her godfather. And her father’s best friend.

And we know that he was involved in planning, (or at least being complicit) in her father’s murder.

‘Cherish’ #2 Page 1


This is the page I was talking about! Where Cherish says she wants the cuter pair of shoes, haha! 

And we get another quick reveal that Cherish has  a trust fund, because how the hell else was she paying for all this high expensive tech that Chaya builds for her!

In the last panel of this page, I’m sure our colorist Omi hated me. Because I desperately wanted to show how the tech was able to change her hair color, so I wanted it to be half and half as if the nanobots were going beep beep beep beep beep (yes, that’s the noise I hear in my head!) and changing her color to green. But Omi is a super talented colorist and he barely batted an eye at the task! 


I love any page where we get to see a badass chick on a motorcycle, am I right?

PAGES 10 & 11

This two-page spread had a lot that it needed to accomplish! But as always Gabriel navigated that artwork seamlessly. We not only had to show Cherish following Warner to some mansion party, but we had to show how Cherish managed to sneak into that party as one of the sex workers, as well as reveal this underage sex trafficking ring. Not to mention doing so in a way that was still classy.

PAGE 12 

Cherish leaves the party completely unnerved, as anyone would, only to find a threatening note left on her motorcycle. 

A note telling her that she needed to abandon her revenge mission. 

You as the reader have no idea who this note is from yet, (or maybe if you were astute you do know or at least have an idea), but there is not confirmation yet. That being said, I would love to know in the comments who you think, or thought (if you’ve already kept reading and know who the note is from) left this note for Cherish! Let us know in the comments below!

This page has another one of my favorite panels from the issue, where we see the crumpled note on the ground, and Cherish driving away from it. 

‘Cherish’ #2 Page 2


Ah, back to a cutesy little dating scene! Which we all know is my favorite to write! These scenes just come so easily to me!

However, the challege here was that that we really had to establish showing Cherish and Connor dating and getting to know each other without it slowing down the plot.
While it’s still unknown if she really does like him or if she is just using him, it had to be plausible enough either way. Which means the two characters needed enough time to bond believably within the book without it stalling the action. 

What I also love about this page is the really sweet flashback we see behind the characters as they’re walking of Cherish’s father holding her when she was an infant at her mother’s grave. It’s the start of a much longer flashback coming with your page turn.


This page is so freaking beautiful it kills me. It really embodies the mishmash of memories that our minds compress. Some images are brought to us just by the stories our family has told us, and some are actual memories that we viscerally remember.

PAGE 15 

Still on their date, Cherish and Connor are walking toward his mother’s house, where the big gala event is happening. 


We’ve seen Valerie’s house once before already, on page one of issue one. The same house where Valerie was hosting the engagement party between Connor and Cherish that we know is coming in a few months.

We also have a doozy of a flashback on this page, revealing another piece of the history of James Fellows: That he and Valerie were lovers.

‘Cherish’ #2 Page 3


Connor brings Cherish up to his apartment on the second floor of his mother’s house. 

While it may sound weird to some readers writing this character, the child of a millionaire, to still live in the same home as his parents, a lot of us who’ve lived in New York no that these houses have apartments within the homes. So it would not be completely unheard of, even for someone with a trust fund to be living above or renting a guesthouse or additional dwelling from their parents.

On this page, we also meet Connor’s adorable little sister. We catch her looking quite guilty up in his apartment on a laptop. But since Elise is an introvert, she has a good reason to be hiding up there… she was avoiding the noise of the party downstairs. 

She also clearly doesn’t like Warner and since she is only a teenager herself, Cherish warns her to stay far away from the man…

Not that he’s going to be much of a problem for anyone soon.

PAGES 18 & 19

We cut to the next scene and see Warner and his wealthy girlfriend, Gwyn getting into their limo, leaving the party. That sex trafficking ring party from early was being held at Gwyn’s mansion… and she and Warner were running it.

FUN FACT: I had something like four different spellings of Gwyn’s character’s name in this issue. It was like as I was writing my brain just could NOT settle on one. I think we had Gwyndolyn, Gwendolyn, Gwendoline… something like that. OOPS! My poor editor. Editing a writer who has dyslexia must be a real challenge! Okay, back to this page…

So, as Gwyn and Warner are walking to their limo, they’re talking about one of the waitresses and trying to recruit her for their nefarious purposes. But at 17, she’s “too old” for most of their clients. 

They get into their limo only to find photographic evidence of their sex trafficking ring, as well as Warner raping underage girls.

At the end of the page, our girl Cherish hijacks their limo, to give them the reckoning we all know they freaking deserve.

I will say, this is one of the darker concepts I’ve ever written into a comic book. Even as I was writing it, I wasn’t sure if it was the right direction to go because it was so intense. But after chatting with my editor as well as higher ups at dynamite, they all agreed that it really did bring the story to another level having Warner be such a deplorable human. His and Gwyn’s characters were very much based on Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell. 

‘Cherish’ #2 Page 4


It was important to me that we get to see that the young girls are all saved, thanks to Cherish and Chaya, and reunited with their families. 

But on this page, we also learn that the reason Warner had been going along with Valerie for so long, (and likewise probably why he turned his head at the murder of his best friend) is because Valerie had discovered him raping a minor. She’s been holdig it over his head for years.

As I’ve mentioned before, finding ways to incorporate sci-fi technology into the story is not my strong suit. However, I thought this was a really cool use of the nanotech. Cherish throws little tiny balls towards them, which then ratchets out into rope, securing them to the limo seats.


This was also a really fun page to write.

I knew I wanted these two characters get to get their comeuppance. But in some ways, death was too easy for people like this. I wanted their characters to suffer. I wanted them to be terrified. And I wanted them both to rot in a jail cell… and not one of those swanky high class white collar jail cells, either. No, no … in my mind they’re at Rikers Island.

But how did I get them there? What was the exciting actionable way that Cherish, an illegal vigilante who’s supposed to be dead, delivers these two on a silver platter without also turning herself in?

Again, being married to Sean Gordon Murphy, car chases and motorcycles are just a part of my world. OK, maybe not a part of my real everyday life world, but they certainly surround me in all various stories and fiction I consume. 

Since these characters were already in a limo, I figured what better way to symbolize the death of their life and wealth then to completely smash and run that limo, (the symbolism for their lifestyle) off the road and into a police station parking lot?

And of course, Cherish jumps out of the driver’s seat just before the limo goes over the edge of the bridge.

It’s also important to note, at the start of this page and even earlier, back on page 18, we see that a black Bugatti is following them. Cherish notices it and asks Chaya to run the plates, even though Chaya says she doesn’t see anything suspicious about it.

‘Cherish’ #2 Page 5


We end this issue by wrapping this one little subplot up in a nice bow.

Cops surround Warner and Gwyn and we learn that they survived the crash. But we also know that they’re going to jail for a very, very long time.

But we can’t just end an issue on a happy little note like that can we? No,no as we’ve learned, I love my cliffhangers!

Well, remember that black Bugatti that was following them? Chaya was wrong. 

It is very suspicious. 

And once Chaya runs the plates, she realizes just how dangerous that car, or rather the driver of that car, is to Cherish. And we end the issue with the threat of that car ready to run her down.

That’s all for now! Thanks for reading!

I can’t wait for you to see all the exciting things that are to come in issue 3!

You can check out Katana’s commentary for Cherish #1 here.

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