8   +   4   =  

The future is a bleak place, especially when the biggest earthquake known to man hit the west coast destroying society as we know it out there. Now the streets are run by gangs, one of which is lead by a nutter who’s quite the intriguing character. Is it good?

Suiciders: Kings of HelL.A. #4 (Vertigo Comics)

So what’s it about? The official Vertigo synopsis reads:

Trix can no longer hide the news from her brother Johnny that she’s pregnant, but even if he finds out, he has other concerns to deal with first. He and the Kings have been causing so much trouble in Los Angeles, they’ve quickly become the city’s most wanted. The police aren’t the only ones on the hunt for the gang, though. Leonard is looking to put the broken pieces of his life back together.

Why does this book matter?

Gritty, violent, and deeply meaningful due to some strong characterization of the wildly insane main character Johnny. Plus Lee Bermejo draws some wickedly vivid covers doesn’t he?

Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?

Oh, s--t.

Johnny finding out his kid sister is pregnant is one of the most fun moments in this series thus far and that’s because writer Lee Bermejo and artist Alessandro Vitti have imbued quite a lot of crazy in the character. How he’ll react, especially given he just committed blatant murders with his blood up, is anyone’s guess. Really it’s one of the best elements of this series as we follow this nutso character around.

Plus, this issue has not one, but two crazed sword flinging action scenes for the character to inhabit, but also some quieter moments for him to be all over the map. It’s really a wonder how Bermejo keeps us from hating this character given his behavior. That said, whatever is coming to him will be earned and thus an entertaining sight as the story progresses.

Vitti really has outdone himself when it comes to the action in this issue. The blood sprays just right, the brutality of the armed police are incredibly vivid and awful, and Johnny continues to bring some insane (I mean that in more ways than one) blows. There’s a somewhat chaotic nature to the art at times that gives you the sense that this world is broken and lawless, which enhances the feel of the series as a whole. Not to mention Johnny’s sister falling down over and over given her pregnancy! I don’t know if I’ve ever gasped at a comic, but every time she takes a digger we’re reminded their lifestyle is wild as they could give two shits about the baby’s health.

It can’t be perfect can it?

Clearly, Bermejo has multiple characters coming together for…some reason. The bigger story isn’t quite clear and so much of this series has been about watching characters do terrible things just because they can. Not every story needs a grand meaning or bigger plan, but it’s hard to care about what is going on because there is a plan and it hasn’t yet revealed itself four issues in.

Yep, he’s cuckoo.

Is It Good?

Another brutal, action-packed and violence-soaked issue is in store for the reader. This series is about as close as most of us will get to the glory of a street fight.

Suiciders: Kings of HelL.A. #4 Review
Wow the art just drips with sometimes hard to watch but always intense violenceJohnny is a real nutter and fun to see his emotions fly all over the placeJohnny's sister being pregnant is really raising my anxiety!
What is the bigger picture story going on here? It still remains to be seen which makes this the sort of reading where you follow characters from point A to point B but aren't quite sure why
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