The comic about a comic hero coming off the page into the real world isn’t a new one, but done in a comedic and over the top way? Kind of original. I check out the second issue in what could be the sleeper comedy of the year…is it good?
Oh, Killstrike #2 (BOOM! Studios)
Last issue Jared accidentally woke up Killstrike, a famous hero from the 90’s that was so bad every issue was destroyed, making his #1 issue worth a lot of money. Jared pulled the comic out to sell it but found Killstrike, in all his musclebound numbskull behavior to go with it. Killstrike needs a mission, typically involving lots of killing, and Jared gives him one: find his father and deliver some vengeance. Just don’t say the “V” word. They’re off to New York to find him, his last location writing for a major comic book publisher, leaving Jared’s wife and newborn daughter at home.
This issue opens with Jared dreaming about the horrible things Killstrike’s arch nemesis might do to his wife and baby. It’s a highly dramatic way to recap what’s going on, but also expresses the stress Jared is going through. Writer Max Bemis does a nice job instilling bits of humor reflective of today’s society, from guys who call other guys gay, to the sheer insanity that is a character like Killstrike. The book is a breeze to read due to the littering of humorous moments, and to make it better, Killstrike is a genuinely silly and endearing character. He’s dumb as bricks, but self-aware enough to make it all humorous. Take for instance one scene where we learn Killstrike’s idea of what people do when they have sex. Bemis also lays down a humorous convention early on that pay off very well by issue’s end. Overall, a solid, laugh-out-loud book that’s clever and fun.
The art by Logan Faerber is a solid cartoony look that helps the humor land every time. While Killstrike is over the top, Faerber is smart enough to not go overboard constantly. Instead, the phsyical humor is used sparingly and is well timed. Killstrike is further strengthened by his expressions that can go from macho jock to silly to innocently introspective. It all works very well, aided by a color palette that’s a bit subdued to ground it in reality.
Is It Good?
Dare I say a better second issue than the first that’s laugh out loud funny and gets the plot rolling nicely. I’m no clairvoyant, but Killstrike is the sleeper hit of the year.