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Sex Criminals #1 – Review

26 Sep
Matt Fraction & Chip Zdarsky are Sex Criminals!

Matt Fraction & Chip Zdarsky are Sex Criminals!

Matt Fraction knows how to make you laugh. The phenomenal success of his current Hawkeye ongoing can attest to that. But he can also spin a hell of a yarn. With a title like Sex Criminals you know there are gonna be tons of fun puns but Fraction takes a good chunk of this debut issue telling a really touching (pun not intended) coming of age tale, instead opting to let Chip Zdarsky sneak some pretty funny sight gags into his backgrounds.

Suzanne’s story reads similar to that of a superhero, with a tragic death and the discovery of a super human ability. That ability, being able to stop time, manifests during her sexual awakening. When she gets off, time stops. “The Quiet” as she calls it eventually fades but in the moment she is totally alone in a silent world while everything is frozen in time. The world seems to fill with colour and Becka Kinzie does a great job of representing a simultaneous sense of both wonder and confusion as Suzanne tries to figure out what is happening to her, both as a girl transforming into a woman and becoming a time manipulator.

Sex Criminals #1 Suzie Toilet

Fraction uses an adult Suzanne to guide us through her past, sitting in the background as little Suzie struggles to adjust to the changes in her life. This also helps to connect the narrative thread to the bookends of the title involving the aforementioned criminal activity. The comedy gold comes via the crude but hilarious toilet humour (pun definitely intended) as the school “ho-bag” teaches Suzie the birds and the bees. Two pages of hilarious doodles ensue.

There is a nice sub-plot involving library books which may give an early indication as to the motivation of the robberies yet to come and the revelation that Suzanne is the only one capable of achieving “The Quiet” provides some fantastic page and panel layouts by Zdarsky.

Verdict: Sex Criminals #1 lives up to the hype. Hopefully the next few issues will focus a little more on the criminal side of things.

9.8/10

Sex Criminals #1 End

Zero #1 – Review

26 Sep
Zero the Hero?

Zero the Hero?

The spy genre is a very popular but very overused one. Especially in recent years with the rise of the “Bourne” archetype, the success of the Mission Impossible films and of course the never ending but highly critically acclaimed dominance of the one and only 007. Comics are no strangers to secret sleuthing either, but luckily Zero manages to bring a fresh take on an old recipe.

Our protagonist (as to call him a hero may be slightly premature at this point) fits the standard archetype of the best of the best that her majesty’s kingdom can offer, but its his mission which begins to differ from the norm. Sent in to retrieve bio-engineering technology  from a Palestinian terrorist in the Gaza Strip whilst the Palestinian is going tow to tow in a big superhero super solider brawl with an enhanced Israelis prototype. The two tear each other and the neighbourhood literally apart whilst Zero slowly takes his position infiltrating his way closer to the action. There are brief glimpses of his handlers back at the Agency in London but they keep their secrecy for the most part (Note: Parts of this issue is not suitable for kids).

Zero #1 Teeth

Michael Walsh gives a great sense of pace and momentum keeping you on the edge of your seat as Zero creeps closer to the tooth flying fight. Fans of David Aja’s Hawkeye will find themselves in love will the artwork but for me it is Jordie Bellaire who steals the show here. Off recent success on other Image books such as Nowhere Men & Comeback (also featuring Michael Walsh on pencils) and a stunning all female issue of Captain Marvel (Written by Kelly Sue DeConnick with Pencils by Emma Rios) Jordie really brings the issue to life making the action feel visceral but still stylized.

Verdict: Zero is a great spy action comic with a talented crew. One worth watching!

8.5/10

Zero #1 End

 

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