Tuesday, July 31, 2018
Review: ASSASSINISTAS #1
IDW PUBLISHING/Black Crown – @IDWPublishing @blackcrownhq
[This review was originally posted on Patreon.]
STORY: Tini Howard – @TiniHoward
ART: Gilbert Hernandez – @BetomessGilbert
COLORS: Rob Davis
LETTERS: Aditya Bidikar
COVER: Gilbert Hernandez
VARIANT COVERS: Sanford Greene (Cover B and Retailer Incentive)
28pp, Color, $3.99 U.S. (December 20, 2017)
DIAMOND CODE: OCT170405
Dominic Price and the Semester Abroad – Part 1 of 6
Assassinistas is a new comic book from writer Tini Howard (The Skeptics; Power Rangers: Pink) and artist Gilbert Hernandez (Love and Rockets). The series focuses on a gay college student, his mother who is a mercenary, and his boyfriend who joins them on a mission.
Assassinistas #1 introduces Octavia “Red October” Price, Charlotte “Scarlet” La Costa, and Rosalyn “Blood” Diamond. Once upon a time, they were assassins who were like three badass action movie chicks. Now, Octavia has a college-age son, Dominic Price, and she needs to pay his tuition. A reunion with one of her former colleagues, however, messes up her plans. Now, she needs Dominic to help her, but she does not know that his boyfriend, Taylor, wants in on the action-movie fun.
Anyone who has read enough of my reviews or have read them long enough knows that I am a huge fan of the long-running alternative comic book series, Love and Rockets, and that I frequently praise its creators, brothers Gilbert and Jaime Hernandez, as if they were my own children. So I have to be honest and let you know, dear readers, that I rarely dislike comics produced by the the brothers, also known as Los Bros.
Well, I was not that crazy about the four-issue miniseries, The Twilight Children (DC Comics/Vertigo), that Gilbert wrote and the late Darwyn Cooke drew . I am more excited about Assassinistas after reading the first issue than I was about The Twilight Children after reading its first issue. The Twilight Children seemed like the work of two great comic book creators whose separate visions do not quite meld into a singular artistic vision.
Assassinistas #1 seems like the work of a singular vision. Hernandez has produced droll and bizarre takes on violent sub-genres (monster movies, crime fiction, lurid romances) that are unique, but that are also infectious reads. Whereas Darwyn Cooke produced highly-polished comics that were neo-classical takes on venerable genres and styles, Tini Howard seems to have an off-beat sensibility, engaging storytelling genres in observance of modern dilemmas. Gilbert also has an off-beat sensibility, and his approach to storytelling often feels timeless, regardless of genre.
That is close enough. Howard and Hernandez seem like a perfect team, and Assassinistas, over its run, may prove that its first issue was indeed a hint of good things to come.
8 out of 10
Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"
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