451 Media 2015
From George Pelecanos
Written by Andi Ewington
Illustrated by Mack Chater
Coloured by Dee Cunniffe
This is the first book i’ve read and reviewed from 451 Media and I surely hope it won’t be last! From the mind of the man who brought us the Wire, George Pelecanos, comes this action thriller that blurs the line of what we see as right or wrong. It’s a fantastically written story and the premise is solid, the characters interesting and the situation they find themselves in one that will capture and keep your attention. Plus the interiors are nicely done! Great attention to detail, honest faces, expressions and realistic not overly done physiques make it that much more believable/relatable.
We open up with two men digging up a grave, yeah it’s seems like they are grave robbers. From how it starts to the realization that what I was thinking was wrong got me good and suddenly I knew I was in. If you can start off an issue with me thinking one thing, thanks to the dialogue, then turn into something completely different you’ve got good skills. Still a lot of questions to be answered but we’ll get a few as this issue moves forward.
We go back a bit and things start to make a little more sense. 35 klicks north of Nasiriyah we see a unit under heavy fire. They are there because of supposed weapons of mass destruction being housed there. I say supposed because I personally think that in all too many cases the intel was bad or purposefully misleading so we’d just kind of terrorize the joint routing rebel factions. Gotta say i’m impressed with this too. Both from a story/dialogue and characterization viewpoint to the visuals that help solidify it this was a great way to get to know these folks.
We also get the major plot twist, information, as to what this team is all about and how the opening scenes tie-in. Unexpected, not so much but believable and realistic definitely and a tad surprising but then again not really. Confused? Read the story you’ll get it. Again there is some monstrously good characterization going on here. This is a really intelligent story weaved into all the action going on and that’s a darn fine thing.
I like McQuade, or Sarge, he’s an interesting fella. A lot more to him than meets the eye that’s for sure and seeing him with the squad’s only casualty’s wife well that makes him even more complex, interesting and perplexing to me. Though it does wonders for plot device, advancement and for fleshing out the Sarge more.
I do like how the ending of the issue not only progresses what we’ve seen so far but it also ties into and loops into the opening sequence and suddenly it all makes sense. I like that, it feels like you are finally let in on a secret and now you’re a part of it.
This is the kind of stuff that would make excellent novels, television series or movies. Getting it in comics well that just icing on the cake for me. This is strong, gripping and intense storytelling that’ll have you guessing the entire time.