So, you know how there has been a recent influx in badass looking anti-heroes? Anti Hero is a term that has been coming around a lot these days, and I do mean a LOT. These are all basically heroes pretending to be bad and shit, but would usually not hesitate to help anyone for a good enough reason. There are people like those and... well, there is Dead-End...
If you are blocking his way, he doesn't care if you are pregnant, a damsel in distress, a little child or a poor elderly man who can't seem to find his false teeth. Well he might help you if there is money involved, but otherwise... NOPE, fuck you! The comic doesn't waste time at all trying to tell you that at all, as in just the first three pages you are shown how miserable this son of bitch is. He actually trips a kid because his happiness is giving him a hard time. Have a read of the preview yourself!
Oh and if you think that was the worst he could do, try flipping through pages 4 and 5, and just see the shitstorm he creates. Yep, he is an evil little badass. I was actually pleasantly surprised when his ability was revealed to the reader, and yes it is an ability, no one can be that lucky. It showed that we weren't going to be dealing with your average henchman who wants to leave a mark, but with instead a cold, calculated, cold-blooded professional who knew exactly what he was doing. If that wasn't enough of a proof, he even mercilessly takes down a dragon(literal) leader of a mob, and briskly dispatches his minions in a really badass and agile way.
Now, the main thing I was trying to look for when I got this issue after reading the 3 pages preview was, "How are they going to make me feel for this character? Especially since he is such an asshole?". Well, that comes in forms of tiny flashbacks that give you an insight on just how rough his childhood was. The usual, bullied by jocks, shunned by girls and beaten everyday for lunch money situation. It hasn't been revealed yet, how exactly this made him turnout so cold, rather than good as in most stories (Spiderman or Kickass), but I would love to find out more. So, it has definitely gotten me interested.
Moving on to the general writing, it is both clever and witty that allows for some really humorous exchange from our characters, especially during Dead-End's square off with Amadeus Kitty, who he greets as, Hello, Kitty... yep. He even throws coins at a guy, telling him to shut up, no one told him to talk yet and to go buy tic-tacs. I will admit, that scene came out of nowhere, and got me laughing like a maniac. Another thing I really like about the writing is, how on point it is. It doesn't waste time with some sophisticated word play, or descriptions of what is taking place, but rather lets the action do the talking, except when necessary.
One of the strongest factors in getting me to buy this first issue was Bruno Bessadi's clean and modern looking art. I don't really like the classic drawing style much where there is too much detail on the characters but instead prefer my coloring to be bright and details to be sharp! So props to Gaétan Georges for the varied and detailed coloring.
However, this doesn't mean that the scenes are very simple looking or not detailed enough at all, as the action sequences truly stand out and look clear enough that you can figure out what is going on, as fortunately there isn't too much going on in them. Even the wordings are nicely lined inside the bubbles and are crispy clear to read. The only thing related to them I would have liked better was, if they emphasized some words for a more robust effect. Still, it is pretty good where it stands.
The other minor quirk is, that I have no idea if there is supposed to be a major plot point here, as nothing was mentioned, and we just followed him through his massacre, which was presumably for money. I'd like it if there was a better plot point connecting everything and hooking the readers in for future installments.
All in all, the first issue was absolutely fun to read, and it was a delight seeing Dead-End do some really crazy and badass stuff. The writing is to the point, and even humorous at times ,with some cool references to catch and the art is absolutely Ladies and Gentlemen, he definitely ain't your Knight In Shining Armor, but he knows how to get shit done! Be sure to pick up the issue, as this series has the potential to become something big if done right.
At the moment, I can't wait to see him square off with even bigger baddies (who are probably not as bad as this douchebag) and see more of what happens with our (not-so) lovely main character. Do get the digital exclusive version from Comixology (Cheaper In Android/iOS Appstore) as you'll get these really cool making of sketches on what inspired different artworks! Also, be on the lookout for my second issue review next month!
Final Score 8/10
+ Badass Protagonist is Badass
+ Good Use Of Dark Humor
+ Hello, Kitty...
- No Big Plot Points
-Need To Build Up His History More