By Daniel Vlasaty
This issue starts with a bang. And ends with a bang, too. Like the rest of Kill or be Killed, this issue starts off at the same place it ends. Brubaker tells us what is going to happen right away and then spends the rest of the issue explaining how it came to happen. You’d think this would get tiring after a while, but it still works here.
Probably because it’s Brubaker writing.
It’s a new story arc, taking place a few months after the last arc ended, and it’s pretty much status quo for Dylan. The only changes are he’s had a falling out with his roommate, Mason, and his little love affair with Kira has fizzled out, although he still does see her from time to time.
He’s also more confident now, which can be taken one of two ways. It’s either good or it’s bad. But from my experience, overconfidence from newbie criminals is never that good of a thing.
The writing in this issue is as good as it’s ever been (again, this is Brubaker writing). And the art, too, is great. Basically, as with anything Brubaker and Phillips do together, you know what you’re getting here. Their stuff is always great.
Honestly, the only bad thing I can say about this story is I can kind of do without the whole demon aspect. And it’s a small thing, really, because it’s barely even a part of the book in this issue. It’s mentioned, but just over a few panels on one page. I’ll hold off before completely denouncing it but I think the story could work just as well if Dylan was simply killing bad people for his own reasons, not because he’s basically being blackmailed by a demon.
I’ll let it play out, though. I have faith in the creative team behind the book.
Kill or be Killed #5
Writer: Ed Brubaker
Artist: Sean Phillips
Colorist: Elizabeth Breitweiser
Publisher: Image Comics