Review: Hit List #1

Time for me to review another Zenescope title.  Hit List is much different from their flagship title Grimm Fariy Tales, and I enjoyed a change of pace in that regard.  I recently read an interview with co-founder Joe Brusha, and he was saying about 10% of their titles will be non-GFT related.  In doing these titles, they’re obviously going outside of their established fan-base, so these are usually miniseries. This first issue features Rian, who seems to be a hitman for an unnamed organization.  The book opens up with her executing an extremely non-discreet hit on a man named James Holt and his girlfriend in Northeast Philadelphia.  Rian rear-ends their car at a red light.  When James steps out of the car and yells at her furiously, she shoots him in the knee.  She ends up shooting him in the throat, and also shoots his girlfriend in the head.  After that she just gets in her car and drives away, the bodies lying in the middle of the street.  The title leads me to believe that they were on a hit list, possibly because James was allegedly a high-ranking member of the Brown Horse Bishops crime organization.

HitList01_coverBWe’re then introduced to two more of this agency’s members, Aaron and Cody.  Cody seems to be the secretary of the whole operation and is your typical Zenescope female character.  She’s the niece of who seems to be the head of the organization, Mr. Bale of Bale Technologies.  Aaron seems to be one of their agents.  There’s a few pages here that I felt were wasted around this point of the story.  Cody is walking to try to talk to another member, Dom.  Two junkies confront her and offer to ‘protect’ her wherever she goes.  She ends up grabbing the one guys’ junk and spin kicks the other in the face.  She then finds Dom and just asks him to keep an eye on Rian.  I felt like there could be a better way to progress the story along than that, but luckily what was about to happen next was the most interesting part of the book.

A skinhead named Tom Keats is being questioned by what seems to be his parole officer.  He claims to have a job and says he’s getting his Nazi tattoos removed.  As soon as the guy interviewing him leaves though, he receives a call that says it’s ‘good to have him back.’  Whether or not this is the Brown Horse Bishops or not is uncertain; James Holt didn’t seem to have any swastikas or other Nazi symbols on him like this guy Tom does.  He ends up getting two girls out of the trunk of his car and locks them in a closet.  Aaron actually shows up to his house; what happens there though I’ll leave you to find out if this book seems interesting to you.  A great twist and cliffhanger at the end leaves me curious as to what happens in issue #2.

I think this is a solid start to an interesting miniseries.  The fact that Zenescope is stepping out of the normal Grimm Fairy Tales niche again is refreshing to see.  It’s also very impressive that this is written by Ralph Tedesco who’s the Editor-in-Chief over at Zenescope.  The story is good, the art is good, and despite what I felt were a few wasted pages I’m definitely intrigued to see the story and the characters unravel further in next month’s issue.

Score: 3/5

Writer: Ralph Tedesco Artist: Sami Kivela Publisher: Zenescope Entertainment Price: $2.99 Release Date: 9/11/13