Friday, February 8, 2013

Snapshot #1

Written by Andy Diggle
Art by Jock

I have very fond memories of Diggle and Jock's Vertigo series The Losers, which dealt with a group of American operatives who had to go underground after they discovered corruption in their leadership.  It was a taut military black ops thriller, at least until it started getting kind of strange towards the end.

Anyway, I was excited to see that the pair have teamed up again for a new series, which is much more urbane and grounded in a day-to-day existence that would be familiar to many comics readers.

Jake is a comics store clerk who, while biking to work one day, finds a smartphone lying on the ground in Golden Gate Park.  After opening his store, and chatting with his customer/friend Steve, he discovers a number of disturbing pictures on the phone, which suggest that a murder has taken place.  When the phone rings, he answers it, and when told he is speaking to the police, he immediately gives his name and location.  Of course, it's not actually a cop who comes to pick up the phone, but a man with a gun.

Jake finally figures out that things aren't right, and he gets out of there.  When the cops aren't interested in helping him, and in fact return the phone to the man in the pictures (who is very clearly not dead), Jake and Steve end up searching the guy's apartment, where of course, they discover a body.

I like the storytelling in this book, but there are a few things that are just too hard to overlook.  I would think that anyone who has read as many comics as Steve and Jake have would not so quickly put themselves into the kinds of situations that fuel hundreds of horror and thriller stories.  One would expect them to act in a more self-preserving way.

Still, now that things are underway, I expect that this book will get better.  Jock's art is always terrific, but I think I like it better in black and white.

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