Rating: 4/5 – Booze, Bullets, and Broads; Everything I Want in a Crime Comic!
by ComicSpectrum EiC Bob Bretall
I read a LOT of comics. Keeping the stories from 100+ comics a month straight in my head requires, for me, some separation to the stories. Reading a wide variety of comics helps me do this. I’m always looking for something that catches my eye, fuels my imagination, and most importantly has unique elements that make it feel different from all the other comics I’m reading. The first offering from Titan’s Hard Case Crime imprint, Triggerman, succeeds on all counts.
The silent 4 page opening sequence turns noir on its ear with a setting in the sunny Arizona desert of 1932, and in the daytime instead of in a dark rainy city. Triggerman is no less moody because of the environmental divergence from a dark and shadowy urban noir. Once the protagonist of the story, Roy, hits the dusty Arizona town and enters the bar, the story kicks into gear with booze, bullets, and broads. Key elements of the genre. After a rousing beginning, the story launches into a flashback the begins the setup for the story, but never closes on the point of what is going on. I’m sure we’ll learn what’s driving Roy next issue, but it would have been nice to have given some clarity to this in this debut issue, which is the main reason I rated this as a 4. Co-writers David Hill and Matz deliver a solid story but I went away feeling a lack of complete satisfaction with the chunk of story delivered in the issue. That’s not going to be a problem when this is consumed in collected edition format, which is where the tale will get most of its life and readership, but it is a bit of a problem for readers consuming it in monthly installments.
It’s great to see a crime story like this in comics format. There are too few with the hard edge shown here. This is definitely a ‘mature readers’ story: It contains language, violence, and nudity… though all fit with the story, given the genre, and didn’t feel particularly gratuitous. Titan pairing up with Hard Case Crime is a welcome addition to the comics landscape. I’m looking forward to the rest of Triggerman and I’m also looking forward to Peepland, the second Hard Case Crime comic, out tomorrow, October 12th!
Reviewed by: Bob Bretall
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