Science fiction goodness is abundant in the comic book world, but when it comes to the ultraviolence there’s the good and the just plain bad. I rolled into IDW Publishing’s new series to check out the balance between the two; is it good?
Sinister Dexter #2 (IDW Publishing)
This book is about a bunch of hired hitmen who are used by the ultra rich to get what they want. They’re similar to the hitmen in Pulp Fiction in that they take their job seriously, but also walk and talk like anybody else. Ramone Dexter and Finn are the protagonists who visit Mangapore to get a job from the Yakuza. Unfortunately for them, the Yakuza already have two hitmen who may rival them in powers. One is Finn’s wife, the other is a poly-metal synthetic sidekick with powers identical to the T-1000 in Terminator 2.
The finger blade is always a bit disturbing.
The strength of this book rests on Dan Abnett’s script, more specifically the taut dialogue. There’s a hell of a lot of dialogue in this book, and it’s incredibly conversational, with plot development coming second. That means it needs to carry the reader along and keep things interesting. Abnett achieves that, partially because the characters have well conveyed dialects, but also because it’s so laid back. At one point Abnett has our protagonists face off against a team of ninjas. The ninjas end up having quirky bits of dialogue to spout off that adds a level of humor that’s enjoyable and interesting.
The issue opens with the T-1000 wannabe taking out a team of doctors who’ve found the cure for cancer. Why are they killing them? Well, because this cure will take away billions of dollars in profit from the drug manufacturers. That, and the city itself, end up being the interesting societal aspects that always make science fiction so interesting. The majority of the book is character driven though, so don’t expect too much in that regard.
The art by Andy Clarke and Dylan Teague is far and away some of the most realistic looking stuff you’ll see on the shelves. The work reminds me of Geof Darrow, only less inclined to show off a nice layout and just tell the story in as many panels as necessary. There’s a lot of detail throughout the book which makes it all more realistic and plausible. The action is a little stiff, mostly because of the layouts, but it gets the job done.
Yeah, I declare you shut up.
- Strong detailed art
- Interesting premise and world
- Stuffy layouts
- Plot isn’t moving very fast
Is It Good?
Overall this is a nice little ride that shouldn’t go unnoticed by science fiction lovers. There’s an undercurrent of societal commentary here that should satiate the thinkers out there, but plenty of gore and violence for the action lovers too.