451 Media 2015
Created by George Pelecanos
Written by Andi Ewington
Illustrated by Mack Chater
Coloured by Dee Cunniffee
Lettered by Jim Campbell
When the wife of a former Marine buddy finds herself a target of a vicious Mexican cartel, she ends up turning to her husband’s old squad for help. Sergeant James McQuade and five former members of the Five-One Sand Scorpions find themselves outnumbered and outgunned, just the way they like it.
I’m really enjoying this book after everything we saw in issue one with the whole then and now setting up the life these characters live and now seeing the return of the characters coming back together well it’s been a great time. Andi’s got this great grasp of how to structure a story so we get the maximum impact of the situation which then in turn is the catalyst for calling in James. After what went down with the team it’s easy to understand how they are extremely reluctant to be in touch and it takes something monumental for that to happen.
There’s something about how this issue opens that makes it extremely telling while also being wholesome. Yes wholesome because while we see what happens with Shaun and Jonesy it’s really all about being a kid and having this loving supportive place to live. Sure it’s nerf guns and a little trying to sneak up on the old man which not so ironically gives some training from an old vet but done in a way that’s meant to teach without trying to induct. Though in all honesty I wish we’d seen more of his two sisters that are only seen through the kitchen window.
Sarah has moved her family here and runs a coffee exporting business. Fully operational but on a very small scale something that keeps her busy, happy, passionate and all the stuff needed to have a nice fulfilling life. Only Senor Martinez wants her business, the Cartel is now trying to muscle in and take her over and she’s not really all that happy about it. Who would be, but still it’s interesting to see that this Mexican Cartel is quite active in regards to quite a few of the former unit’s extended family. Something James is going to have to deal with, with extreme prejudice hopefully.
Strong arm tactics without resorting to busting a knee cap or damaging the property is a nice way to do things. There’s a decent sense of subtlety here that I appreciate and a sophistication to say hey we’re everywhere and you’ll give us what we want eventually so make it easy on yourself and just do it now. We do know why they want Sara’s little business and you will too if you read the story, it’s quite clever actually and yeah i’m really liking the small and larger picture of everything happening here.
The characterization throughout the issue is amazing. The mix of characters we meet, from Sarah’s family to the Cartel members are fleshed out beautifully. There’s something familiar and yet unique about how this is all being presented. It takes a lot for us to be surprised by books nowadays yet 451 Media has a nice knack for bringing this to us.
Mack and Dee do a very nice job on the interiors here. I like the look of these characters they are normal average everyday people and that’s a huge bonus. I like the progression of the pages, panel layouts and the way the story flows here. Seriously there’s something about the attention to detail and the shading that impresses me.
I’m a big fan of 451 Media and they are totally worth finding.