Action Lab:Danger Zone 2015
Written by Christopher Mills
Illustrated by Rick Burchett
The first two issues of this had me incredibly excited and here we see a story that not starts off McCrae’s latest adventures. After getting out of short prison stint we get to see the first job McCrae has after getting out. I think this is an earlier story from the last one, I don’t mean timeline wise I mean literally because Rick’s work is a tad different, not as tight or as clean as the previous one. Don’t get me wrong it’s still good, strong work it’s just obviously an earlier work.
Ah I do like the precedent set here though with McCrae being the ladies man. Though this time around I liked the fact that he’s just gotten out of prison and couldn’t help himself. still it’s always the Dames that get the man in trouble. But i’m getting ahead of myself here. So Red called on McCrae for his experience in making sure a plan is airtight and can pulled off. So we get a nice look at what he does, what he can bring to the table and why he’s been around and used so often. It’s nice look at him and skill set other than what we’ve seen so far.
Christopher’s got a great grasp on storytelling and this character. McCrae is a fascinating character study and as we learn more about him I find myself wanting to learn even more. As we see here while his services are needed he knows better than to trust anyone heck even himself. I like how he plans to betray Red here and throughout the course of the story crosses and double crosses seem to be the order of the day. It keeps the reader guessing as to who is going to come out on top, how they are going to do and who is the real threat here.
Pretty early on we see Angel, Red’s wife, cozy up to McCrae and manipulate him into doing her dirty work for her or at least planning to. Ah there’s nothing worse that a cold hearted woman willing to do whatever she must to get what she wants. Still I found myself absorbed by what was happening and didn’t even think to look deeper into things. That’s how good Christopher’s story is you kind find yourself going with the flow then suddenly whammo things change on a dime. Then you’re like what the heck okay shoulda seen that coming.
Rick’s work depicts McCrae as a hairy silver daddy who can still get plenty of tail and i’m okay with that. The sex scenes are tasteful and telling, more so if you look past just the visuals. His ability to tell the story visually is great and the page/panel layouts and usage flow nicely. The black and white detailed effect kind of brings the reader back to the days before colour television and detective noir thrillers that are sadly missing from today’s offerings.
The fact that the boys can bring this kind of throwback story to us and make relevant to today’s audiences only goes to show that the classics never die. They stand the test of time and this is a modern day classic. Action, adventure, intrigue and a whole mess of something going on here makes for a great day’s reading. Plus you are never sure where McCrae really stands as a thief or just a hard nosed opportunistic good guy. Blurred lines aren’t so bad.
Here’s hoping there’s room in the Danger Zone for his further adventures!