Image Comics 2016
Written by Brian Azzarello
Illustrated by Eduardo Risso
Colour Assist by Cristian Rossi
Letters & Design by Jared K. Fletcher
When we left Handsome Joe was met by men the Boss sent down to see what the hold up was and all hell broke loose. We pick up with Joe waking up to the aftermath of what happened as he has to put the pieces together from his drunken stupor on the Moonshine he’d been swilling.
Brian is like this mad genius when it comes to storytelling. First to use the era and prohibition to find a backwater Moonshiner whose product is so good it’d make a mint is enough in itself. Then add into the mix the family itself and the various members of whom don’t wish to be stuck in this place and the characterisation and story development would be strong enough to make this a palpable thriller. But no he has to go that extra mile and add something else to the mix and here where Niggra’s are more psychic and in tune with their ancestry alongside the mythical lycanthropes who wander the woods and it takes the story to a new stratosphere.
For whatever reason that is as of yet unrevealed Joe is liked by Holt and his family and is being given a chance to see, understand and live. So why is that, does the family need new blood so that inbreeding isn’t an issue? It would seem that’s something which would happen periodically if we are to believe what we read. So there’s a mystery here surrounding Joe that is slowly coming to light and again if it were just that it would be more than enough.
Normally i’m one for a lot of backgrounds to be used in the interior artwork. Here however what Eduardo does is pretty brilliant. I like the lack of backgrounds and the focus on what we see here it has this rather dramatic impact that is unexpected and strong. The use of page layouts through angles and perspective really do help us see things with the maximum impact that we need. The guys work incredibly well together and it comes across beautifully on the pages.
Now with more folks coming to town and a larger pool to of people to kill from not to mention that Joe and Tempest seem to have something dangerous brewing between them things are becoming more and more interesting. How would have thought it could possibly get more interesting I mean the characterisation, the story structure and pacing of this series so far has been exceptionally well done.
The more we learn the more we want to know. The good, bad and ugly it’s as if I can’t get enough of what’s happening here. Cissy’s nature revealed, Lou’s predicaments, yes plural as the chaos that surrounds him threatens to consume him fully it’s all presented as such that we just can’t get enough.
Brilliantly written with stunning visuals this series will worm its way under your skin and leave an itch that can’t be scratched away.