Sunday, October 31, 2010

Violent Messiahs Vol. 1: The Book of Job

Written by Joshua Dysart
Art by Tone Rodriguez

Having enjoyed Dysart's run on Vertigo's Unknown Soldier title as much as I have,  I figured I should check out some of his earlier work.  Violent Messiahs, originally published by Image Comics, was his first published comic, and it kind of shows.

The book is set on Rankor Island, which seems to be almost completely urban.  The city has been dealing with two large problems.  One is Citizen Pain, a vigilante who has been torturing and dispatching criminals all over the place.  The other is the Family Man, a serial killer who has been targeting the families of abused or mistreated children.  Citizen Pain is being investigated by Cheri Major, your typical tough as nails female police lieutenant who suffers from some sort of panic attacks.

As the story progresses, we learn that the two killers are connected, and tied in to some sort of strange conspiracy theory group called the Keepers of the Snake.  The story falls into some very predictable patterns, but stays entertaining enough, while never being very unique.

The most interesting figure in the comic is Citizen Pain, really named Job.  My problem with him is that he looks way too much like he belongs in Matt Wagner's classic Grendel series.  The art is much like the story - serviceable, without ever being too impressive.

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