Image Comics 2019
Written by Mark Millar
Illustrated by Simone Bianchi
Lettered by Peter Doherty
Sharkey and his sidekick are racing through space, hunting for Edra Deering—the terrorist fugitive with a huge bounty on her head. But they’re not the only hunters with Edra in their sights, and the competition will stop at nothing to throw Sharkey’s mission off course.
Okay so we all know that Extra-Billy is going to be Sharkey’s sidekick except for Sharkey himself. So the fact that we are seeing this process unfold before us is pretty darn nice. Mark is laying this one out in such a way that while it feels inevitable nothing is quite guaranteed. Still it is nice to see Extra-Billy being able to extract different aspects of personality from Sharkey. Back to a point I wanted to make, the way that this is structured and the ebb & flow of the story feels normal to me like it has this great authentic natural feel to it, especially with Sharkey not wanting to miss out on this bounty and keeping the kid with him instead of dropping him off!
I find this a little ironic, for me totally, as usually when a kid enters a story it’s about time to end the run. Which is exactly what we’ve seen throughout television history, the old adage never work with kids or animals in full display. However Sharkey seems to me to be some Smokey like character that blends Burt Reynolds and Elvis Presley so I highly doubt that there is no one or nothing that could make him falter or turn his adventures sour.
I was going to say the way characters were being introduced, but I can’t say that because we have seen them before in the first issue. However to see them pop up here and come face to face with Sharkey and trying to use Extra-Billy as some leverage well that was interesting to say the least. It is like the kid has some sort of homing device on him so that every single bounty hunter out there is capable of walking right on up to them. I’m not saying that’s true but that locket he wants fixed...and here is where my mind goes beyond what we see presented on the page. So yeah I am thinking of possible scenarios and that means I am in and there’s no escape for me.
Oh my goodness I cannot believe the work that Simone is doing here. I mean seeing Extra-Billy’s face in the stars of space that Holy F moment if there was one. I am always in awe of his work, seeing the linework, the travelling space RV for example, to keep things interesting, identifiable and appropriately I mean come on now this bloody stupendous stuff. The creativity and imagination that is on display here and the pure mix of The Village People amped up to nearly unstoppable kink levels it’s freaking mesmerising. The utilisation of the page layouts nad how we see th angles and perspective in the panels show us on the best set of eyes for storytelling today. Even the colour work here keeps the reader guessing and with the light sources changing colours along the way we never know what to expect next and above all else what more do you want?
The story & plot development here is great and how the pacing helps it along while we get to see more and more personality emerge from the characters is like a dream come true. Mark has been responsible for some of the most iconic and classic series in my memorable history and while they’ve most been dark, gritty and ever so violent I do believe that this one is probably the best of the best. There is so much more than meets the eye here and I want to see and explore every dark corner, heck even the bright ones, in this galaxy alongside the Fuck Knuckle, whatever that is!