COMIC BOOK REVIEW: ‘All Crime’ and ‘Dames in the Atomic Age’

All Crime is a story about the frailty of friendship when up against the selfishness of love. The book is written by Art of Fiction, with cover art from Bruce Timm and illustrated by Ed Laroche and Marc Sandroni. The panels on the first page jumps right into a violent scene of a man committing a gruesome murder hit. Quickly, the story is established as a mob or gang story. The main character, Dodger, wants to kill a supposedly powerful mob leader, Louie Derose.

Then the tale jumps into the past, establishing the relationships between the two men and a woman.

This comic is pretty simple and straightforward, which I appreciated. The strongest point of the story is definitely the flashbacks explaining where Dodger was coming from and why he wanted to kill his childhood best friend, Louie. It is assumed that they were in love with the same woman, which caused the downfall of their friendship — though it can also be assumed that their choice of ‘career’ may have caused a few rifts. The character developments are short and sweet which some readers may find a little too abrupt. Personally, I didn’t mind filling in the holes of the story myself.

Although there is some violence, the art is well done and not too gory. The change of styles between the two page artists were seamless. This is a great start to a series and I recommend it to readers who are looking for a well-drawn book involving modern day gangsters.

The cover of this book, drawn by Ragnar, really attracted me because I love the graphic design and I really liked the illustration style. I barely noticed the silhouette of the giant ant in the background of the art at the first few glances! It’s pretty cool.

Dames in the Atomic Age surprised me pleasantly. I read it after All Crime and assumed it would be another love story disguised in a cop and mob story. It is written by Christopher Ryder and drawn by Marc Sandroni.

The writing in this book is excellent and I enjoyed the dialogue between the characters. Dames also spotlights the friendship between two men. A detective, Fisch, was hired to investigate the infidelity of a scientist’s wife to discover that she was having an affair with his best friend, Winston. The book opens up with the detective and the woman in a fight with three men who spoke a strange language (which the detective assumed was Russian). The men had a strange weapon that shot laser fire instead of bullets.

Soon, the story opens up into science fiction, dealing with mad scientists, aliens and monsters (the giant ants!).

I loved how the story progressed and the hint of the time era — the atomic age — that the story was set in. The interaction between Fisch and Winston was endearing with a great back story that established their friendship clearly without having to make it complicated or longer. There is a dash of humor as the two seem to like to bicker in classic “cop movie” style.

I recommend this one for anyone who likes a good, science fiction story. It was a lot of fun to read.

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