Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Criminal: The Last of the Innocent #3

Written by Ed Brubaker
Art by Sean Phillips

So you've put together a plan that is both simple and complicated at the same time, and killed your wife.  Everything works the way it's supposed to - the police have followed the clues you laid out to the person you are trying to frame.  Your friends are flocking to you in support and sympathy.  Your father-in-law, who has never liked you, is showing support.  Now the big question - can you really pull it off?

It's at this stage that I would suppose the killer is most vulnerable.  It's human nature to let down your guard, or to slip up in the slightest way, and blow it all.  This is where Riley finds himself in this whole issue; everything is going so well, but he's having a hard time deciding to what extent he's acting and where genuine emotion begins.

This issue is a very powerful character study.  Riley doesn't have guilt over his wife, but does feel badly that he led his friend Freakout, who had been sober for a year, off the wagon.  He also is beginning to see the sheer variety of possibility open to him in his new existence, but only if he doesn't slip.

This is a very taut story.  There is nothing to like in Riley, but Brubaker and Phillips have me caring about what's going to happen to him.  This has been the best Criminal arc yet.  Also, Jay Faeber's essay in the back actually makes me want to watch an episode or two of Magnum, P.I., a show I never liked growing up.

No comments: