By Hunter T. Patrick
Just how a one-shot should be. In a very simplified premise to this comic, a ‘fixer’’ has his daughter kidnapped, and he tries to save her. For a living, he does dangerous, obviously illegal work for his higher-ups and once his daughter has gotten involved, he decides to spring into a very violent persona to make sure no matter what he can get her back. The premise is one that has been shown before, and as has the huge twist of an ending. Luckily both are extremely strong and worth the huge ride showed here. If somehow spoilers are presented to you, avoid them. The ending is well earned. This is a one-shot that takes the short length of a comic book and has so much on this issue that is neither too much or too little. It is beyond just right.
The writing is not the strongest part of the comic, but that says a lot about this comic as the writing is very strong. The writing is very reminiscent of classic action movies (perhaps stronger than most). The writing is also in lieu of Watchmen for the way it and the art perfectly juxtapose and complement one another in each panel. The story itself is both a classic story but also all on its own. The start and the end come together gracefully. The whole book lacks weak points and is nonstop. It uses the page count (21 story pages) for making sure the plot is not overdone, and the craziness keeps building.
Previously states the writing is not the strongest part of the issue. That is because the artwork is way too strong for most any writing to be to its level. The drawings are both creepy and weird in a sense that everything is supposed to convey them both. From the start, the artwork has a dreamlike quality and does not hide that it is going to get weird throughout. The colors in the background for most every panel is very mono-colored. Occasionally key figures will be colored in a strong contrast to the background. It succeeds in a book that has no problem showing, not telling for the majority of the book. The ending tells a bit (which is needed) but continues to show everything to cap off the craziness. The artwork might be too much for some traditional readers. If so either flip through some pages to see if you can last through it or trust in the fact it is what is needed for the story and would be lost without this art.
This may be too crazy for some readers, but do not fret, it needs that. This is a very heavy book. If it were a limited series or an ongoing, it would lack all the heaviness in one go. The team was smart in a one-shot manner, not even a TPB. For people on the fence, this is just 21 pages. The lost here is not buying this and losing out on a wonderful roller coaster ride, with just the right length and just the right turns.
The Edge Off