In spite of all the weirdness, close up phalluses, and in your face boldness, I have found Joe Casey’s little exploration into the realm of inhibition to be quite interesting as underneath all the controversy, that there is a very deep, intertwining and complete story that is being worked out. And the interesting thing about it all is that it continues to flow kind of like a puzzle revealing a piece here and a piece there until we have the full idea. That full idea, we still are not sure of. But with Issue #14, things are beginning to propel themselves into something pretty big with the whole of Saturn City as the price. You see, Saturn City used to be protected by a hero called the Armored Saint. The Saint waged war on the baddies and thugs of Saturn City for many years. But all of sudden, he retired with no real reason. It has become evident that the Saint, or that is the Saint’s alter ego, wealthy patron of the city Simon Cooke, grew tired of the thankless job of crime fighting and he wanted a life of his own where he could experience all those things that he thought he was missing. What he has discovered is that life is pretty interesting to say the least, much more complicated than hauling in bad guys. Also, while the Saint has been away, elements on both the good side and bad side have been at work trying to secure the city to whatever their vision of it is, turning it into a powder keg that could blow at any time. Pretty damned deep for a comic entitled Sex huh?
But that is something I have started to expect when reading this title. There is a hell of a whole lot more to it than meets the initial eye. Several stories are working at once that seem to be pushing to a conclusion, but it is anybody’s guess as to when it will all connect. Here in this issue, Cooke, after stumbling across his lawyer in a rather compromising position while trying to stave off a full blown scandal, is in need of some serious cover up work as a potential business partner has died rather gruesomely to the hands of several prostitutes. Elsewhere, Keenan, Wade, once the Saint’s sidekick, but now an independent, has been healing from his wounds after infiltrating the notorious street gang, The Breaks. He has a plan ready to be unleashed that he believes will bring balance back to the city. Add in the sadistic Alpha Brothers Cha Cha and Dolph and their bid to secure power, a little back story of this rather peculiar duo, and a nosy reporter who wants to get the goods on Simon Cooke. And well, you get yet another very well thought out story that rises well above its humble shock value origins.
Joe Casey has some intense design in this sordid tale of sex and crime in the big city. It is kind of a kinky noir, that has a strong understory working behind the scenes. When you add Pioter Kowalski’s framing with special; guest artist Chris Peterson’s brand of sinister brutality (Note: It is brutal), well you have a nicely laid out issue that has become the norm with this title as of late.
This is a hard title to love. It has been up and down on the review scale. And I for one am one of those that didn’t quite get where the story was going. But somewhere around issue #9 or so, things began to churn forward and really become an interesting cutting edge comic for surpassing what expectations might have been. It is good, and it has been good for the last several issues. Only time will tell when this keg of decadence will explode. I know I am ready to see it.
Writer: Joe Casey Artists: Chris Peterson, Piotr Kowalski Publisher: Image Comics Price: $2.99 Release Date: 6/25/14 Format: Ongoing, Print/Digital