Review By: Sergio Porras Issue two of Ten Grand reminded me why I stay the fuck out of night clubs... They're all part of a cult, duh. This issue had a lot more story to offer and really got me excited for the rest of the series. With the introduction of a few new characters, a couple of plot twists, and amazing art of demons whose destruction brings brutality to a whole new level, Ten Grand #2 is definitely a lot of bang for your buck and should be enough to make you add this title to your ever-growing pull list.
Joe decides to do a little more investigating on the Divine Will church which presents itself as a store front church on the wrong side of the tracks, they even have what seems like a sweet old lady running the front desk, but when Joe opens up one of the doors he walks straight into a demonic dance club. Joe doesn't go in blindly though, that would be crazy right? He enlists the help of his buddy Johnny who has the ability to see into dimensions that are invisible to the naked eye. Johnny describes what he sees as, "a god damn vortex of utter darkness".
Once inside Joe comes face to face with a demon that he refers to as a "fleshist", a demon that over stuffs itself into a human body so it could feel normal sensations except they are completely grotesque looking. Joe gets right down to business and asks about Sarah Thomas, the girl that he's supposed to be looking for. The fleshist is smarter than that; he knows that Joe is also on this hunt for personal, more selfish reasons. He informs Joe that he can deliver the man that he is hunting but it must be an even trade. The demon tries to convince Joe that the other side, the people who Joe works for, is using his love for Laura against him to do their dirty deeds. There is a genuine feeling that this is the first time Joe has ever considered that a possibility.
Joe decides to check in with Debbie Thomas but when he gets to her apartment he's struck with a rude awakening, the demons beat him to Debbie and they are using her to send him a message. She's standing at the edge of a seven story building about to jump but before she jumps she delivers their message telling Joe that he is a coward whose poor decisions affect the woman in his life. Moments before falling to the ground Debbie snaps out of it and pleads for Joe's help. He jumps after her but it’s too late. Debbie and Joe both hit the payment instantly killing both of them; Joe is now reunited with Laura... Let the five-minute count down begin.
Ben Templesmith's art is stunning; so many colors that it makes my head spin. Now that I'm on the second issue my eyes have adjusted a little more to Templesmith's rough drawing style. The scratchy look gives the book the grittiness that it deserves. The transition from the dark and demonic to the bright and angelic is a great effect that flawlessly merges two worlds.
The bottom line is that Ten Grand is a great story and I feel sorry for those of you that are going to wait for the trade or even worse have decided to pass on it all together. There seems to be a little of something in it for everyone. It's a horror book, that tells a love story, which mashes up as a crime thriller, that forces you to walk the moral line of what is right and what we are supposed to perceive as right. Issue two has expanded the dark world of Joe Fitzgerald and now is the time to start reading before the story hits its full stride.
Writer: J. Michael Straczynski
Artist: Ben Templesmith
Publisher: Joe’s Comics and Image Comics
Release Date: 6/5/13