Writer: Joe Hill
Art: Martin Simmonds
IDW‘s new title is about violence, stand-up comedy, ex-cops, and plagiarism. Plus it is written and illustrated by an incredible team of artists who promises to be an amazing team up for the ages. Basically what I’m saying is: I’m excited to see where this goes.
The comic opens with the protagonist,ex-cop turned comedian Syd Homes, performing his stand-up routine in a comedy club. After he’s done we get to meet his comedian adversary, Carl Dixon, as he taunts Syd whilst going up on stage for his own routine. It turns out that Carl has his comedy career going well, not because he’s talented but because he steals jokes and gets acquainted with producers. That enrages Syd and his friends provoking a direct conflict between Homes and Dixon.
I have yet to read Joe Hill’s Locke and Key but from what I read in this first chapter it is easy to say that he’s got a knack for comics. He inserts a lot of exposition in Syd’s jokes taking an actual advantage of the comedy theme the story is about. The characters are smoothly introduced and the construction on Syd Homes’ past life as a police officer is charming and raises a lot of interesting questions, which makes sense seeing as this is only the first chapter.
Martin Simmonds’ artwork has drawn my attention since I read Punks Not Dead and even though the art is as mesmerizing in this new comic as it was in the previous series, with strong lines grounding reality and vivid colors, there are some differences. For instance, there are no magical elements in this story (at least not yet) so we don’t get that gorgeous glow Simmonds does so well. Instead, the artist creates an involving atmosphere for the scene that takes place inside the comedy club. Outside the club, we still get colder tones but keeping the involvement I mentioned before.
The coloring for this chapter is spectacular, I’m thinking maybe even more than any of Simmonds’ previous works. The only downside is a quick fight scene we get around the end of the comic that I’m thinking it is supposed to look distorted but there are some punches that don’t appear to hit so, it barely looks like a fight at all.
Like mentioned at the beginning of the review, I loved how well paired Simmonds’ style got with Hill’s storytelling and despite my regards about the fight scene, the plot and the art are more than enough to convince me to keep up with this comic and see just how wonderful and gritty it can get.
Like mentioned at the beginning of the review, I loved how well paired Simmonds' style got with Hill's storytelling and despite my regards about the fight scene, the plot and the art are more than enough to convince me to keep up with this comic and see just how wonderful and gritty it can get.