Tag Archives: ed brubaker

Review: Criminal #5

Criminal #5

Criminal #5 is the beginning of a new storyline, “Cruel Summer,” a perfect starting point for new readers. Dan Farraday, private detective and skip-tracer, comes to town looking for a dangerous woman. Taking place in 1988, the issue kicks off the last days of Teeg Lawless. Lawless is a character who is at the center of so much of Criminal in various ways. But, writer Ed Brubaker has crafted an issue and series you don’t need to know that.

Brubaker has crafted the perfect example of what makes this series work in Criminal #5. For those who have never read an issue, you can pick it up and enjoy its detective noir. It’s a simple story of a private investigator attempting to track down a woman. But, for those who have read the series for a long time, it becomes so much more by the end. It’s enjoyable on multiple levels.

But Brubaker also makes sure to focus on the characters, not just the familiar tropes. Farraday as a character has depth that’s revealed as the story progresses. At first he’s the simple detective. He’s then revealed to have had a rough life which partially drives him now. Then, his experiences in Vietnam drives home his motivation for what he does.

The art by Sean Phillips and colorist Jacob Phillips as usual is amazing. It uses all of the familiar visual queues we’d expect from this sort of story. There’s a cool and sexiness about it all mixed with some danger. Just engrossing visuals to match an engrossing story.

Criminal #5 is as amazing as I’d expect. It continues one of the best comics out today and that’s not even counting all of the extra material included in the issue. This is a perfect issue to hop on and check out what you’re missing and long time readers will be excited to see where this goes.

Story: Ed Brubaker Art: Sean Phillips Color: Jacob Phillips
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Criminal #2 and #3 are Going Back to Print and Criminal #5 Gets an Overship

Ed Brubaker has announced in his newsletter that Criminal #2 and #3 are both going back to print. This is the latest volume to his praised series with artist Sean Phillips.

The two issues make up the “Bad Weekend” storyline that blends fantasy and reality revolving around a comic creator and a comic convention that looks a lot like one in San Diego.

The demand for the single issues keep growing so a new printing, with a different color logo, is happening. You can read our review of Criminal #2 and Criminal #3.

Criminal #3 2nd printing

“Bad Weekend” is also getting collected with eight pages of added scenes. It’ll be released in both hardback and softback editions.

Criminal #5 comes to shelves June 5 and due to sellouts, comic shops are getting an overship of 50% more than they ordered at no additional cost. It kicks off a new jumping on point and is a perfect start for new readers.

Criminal #5

Review: Criminal #4

Criminal #4

A breathtaking single-issue story finds Ricky Lawless caught in the grip of violence and double cross after a robbery.

Even the worst issue of Criminal is so far ahead and above so much of what’s out there in comics today. Criminal #4 is the weakest of the issues for this new series released so far but it’s still so beyond entertaining and well written. A standalone issue, it follows Ricky Lawless tweaking from drugs and falling further into a mess he’s created.

Writer Ed Brubaker, artist Sean Phillips, and colorist Jacob Phillips craft an issue that anyone can pick up and enjoy but at the same time ties into the greater tapestry that is, and has, been woven. We see a criminal, a drug user, out of control, and it’s not until much later in the comic that everything truly impacts and comes together.

Instead, the trio of creators focus on the spiraling insanity that comes with a bender including paranoia and more. It’s a story of tragedy on multiple levels and also of someone trying to do good but resulting in nothing but bad.

Like so much they’ve done with other characters, Ricky isn’t completely bad. We’re presented with a somewhat sympathetic character who goes from a junkie to someone trying to do some good. But, that good is actual shit sucking in all who get in to his orbit. Every small detail has another side to it creating a world of gray.

As always, the single issue contains back page art and articles you won’t find in the trades delivering an extra that’s not needed when a story is this quality.

Criminal #4 is a depressing comic in so many ways but it also is gripping an done of the best comics of the week.

Story: Ed Brubaker Art: Sean Phillips Color: Jacob Phillips
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Criminal #4

Criminal #4

(W) Ed Brubaker (A) Jacob Phillips (A/CA) Sean Phillips
In Shops: Apr 24, 2019
SRP: $3.99

A breathtaking single-issue story finds Ricky Lawless caught in the grip of violence and double cross after a robbery.

As always, CRIMINAL contains back page art and articles only found in the single issues.

Criminal #4

Criminal Expands its Bad Weekend

Bad Weekend

The second and third issues of Ed Brubaker and Sean PhillippsCriminal was a meta story revolving around two comic creators and a convention which had a lot in common with San Diego Comic-Con. In time for the upcoming San Diego Comic-Con a new edition of “Bad Weekend” will be released with all-new material.

The story focuses on Hal Crane who uses his trip to a convention to find out what happened to some missing artowkr.

Published by Image Comics, the new hardcover edition will feature expanded scenes and is being described as “expanded and remastered.”

Bad Weekend will be released July 10 in comic book stores, with a July 16 release date for bookstores.

You can read our review of the second and third issues. “Bad Weekend” is available for pre-order now.

Review: Criminal #3

Criminal #3

Jacob’s weekend taking care of his old mentor takes a turn for the worse.

I hate throwing the word “perfection” around a lot but Criminal #3 is damn near perfection. Writer Ed Brubaker, artist Sean Phillips, and colorist Jacob Phillips have put together an issue that’s pulp crime but also beyond touching. This isn’t your typical story about a robbery, it’s about an industry that’ll abuse you, spit you out, and bring out the worst.

The second part of “The Longest Weekend,” the story follows Jacob and his former boss Hal Crane, two comic industry vets and different points in their careers. This issue, like the last, feels like a blend of fact and fiction as it continues to explore the dark side of the comic business. In some ways exaggerated, in other ways not, it winds up being a tragic story with an ending that’ll get you to gasp in a way. It’s tragic. It’s sad. It’s entertaining. It’s one of the best comics out this week.

The art, as usual, is amazing. The style is perfect for this type of story and this trio of creators create a blend of story and art that is unparalleled in this industry. Each character tells a story on their own with something as simple as their body language and stance. The use of color is key here too as it not only clues us in to the past or present but also helps set the mood even more so than the dialogue at times.

The issue is amazing blending fact and fiction to deliver a comic that entertains but will also leave you pondering the truth of it all. Criminal is three issues in and one of the best comics on the market (again). It’s not too late to dive in as this is a comic that should be on everyone’s pull list.

Story: Ed Brubaker Art: Sean Phillips Color: Jacob Phillips
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Criminal #3

Criminal #3

(W) Ed Brubaker (A/CA) Sean Phillips
In Shops: Mar 20, 2019
SRP: $3.99

“THE LONGEST WEEKEND,” Part Two-Jacob’s weekend taking care of his old mentor takes a turn for the worse. As always, CRIMINAL contains back page art and articles only found in the single issues.

Criminal #3

Review: Criminal #2

Archie Lewis was the artist’s artist in his heyday, although that’s not what he’s famous for. He’s famous for being a nightmare to work with-and dangerous. So when an old assistant is forced to chaperone his one-time mentor to receive his lifetime achievement award, well… let’s just say things don’t go well.

Criminal is one of the best comics on the market and that makes each issue having to meet a high bar. Criminal #2 meets that high bar with a meta-story focused on a washed up comic creator and an out of control comic convention weekend.

Ed Brubaker delivers another amazing issue that name drops real creators and intermixes real settings that will get die hard comic fans to smile. But, what Brubaker really gets you to do is ponder who he’s writing about? Real names. Real settings. It’s hard to not think about this faux reality he’s created and it’s delivered in such a way that you almost expect this issue is just one of those comic history rumors brought to life.

The story itself is interesting and each page you wonder where it’s all going and where it’ll lead to. By the time it all wraps up, it makes sense and you can only get more excited as this second issue, you know will weave into something special coming down the road.

Sean Phillips art with color by Jacob Phillips is the usual amazing with a style and look that screams “pulp,” “crime,” and “noir.” It’s an art style that’s unique with a level of expression and detail that has you linger on the page and makes the emotion and action explode at times.

The issue is pure brilliance with a level of meta that you’re not sure what is what isn’t true. For comic historians and fans, there’s so much to enjoy about the issue and for those you have gone to a certain convention, the locations shown are recognizable. This is a comic that can be enjoyed for it’s noir and crime focus and loved that it’s so much more.

Story: Ed Brubaker Art: Sean Phillips Color: Jacob Phillips
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Criminal #2

Criminal #2

(W) Ed Brubaker (A/CA) Sean Phillips
In Shops: Feb 13, 2019
SRP: $3.99

“THE LONGEST WEEKEND”: Archie Lewis was the artist’s artist in his heyday, although that’s not what he’s famous for. He’s famous for being a nightmare to work with-and dangerous. So when an old assistant is forced to chaperone his one-time mentor to receive his lifetime achievement award, well… let’s just say things don’t go well. As always, CRIMINAL contains back page art and articles only found in the single issues.

Criminal #2

Criminal is Back and Getting a Second Printing

Crime comic masters Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips’ have hit the ground running with the return of the monthly, iconic Criminal series. In order to keep up with the overwhelming demand, Criminal #1 will be rushed back to print.

In this double-sized Criminal #1 issue, Teeg Lawless is back in town—but he finds himself in more trouble than ever. Thanks to his delinquent teenage son, this time fists and bullets may not be enough to solve Teeg’s problems.

Criminal #1, 2nd printing (Diamond Code NOV188407) Criminal #2 (Diamond Code DEC180234) will both be available on Wednesday, Feb 13. The final order cutoff deadline for comics retailers is Monday, Jan 21. Fans can also subscribe to receive the series delivered by mail within the domestic U.S. on Image Direct.

Criminal #1
« Older Entries