100 Bullets #50
Quick Rating: Huh?
Title: Prey For Reign
As a bunch of crooks wait for the fallout of a job, one of them tells a story of a long time ago.
Writer: Brian Azzarello
Art: Eduardo Risso
Colors: Patricia Mulvihill
Letters: Clem Robins
Editor: Will Dennis
Cover Art: Dave Johnson
Publisher: DC Comics/Vertigo
I’m told this book marks the halfway point in this critically acclaimed Vertigo series, and it appears to fill in some needed backstory. However, if you haven’t been reading 100 Bullets – and I haven’t – it’s just going to leave you scratching your head.
A group of criminals called together for a job, Reservoir Dogs-style, sit in a bar and wait for a straggler to arrive or turn up dead. While they wait, one of them begins to tell the others a story of a time long ago when a group of 13 power-hungry men took actions that would place the world in their hands. This of course raises another question, like in the recent 1602, does every comic book title with links to colonial times have to invoke the Roanoke colony? (Yes, I know 100 Bullets was planned out long before 1602, but that doesn’t make the whole thing any less repetitive.)
This is clearly intended to be backstory on the main recurring plot of this series – the mysterious Mr. Graves who gives people guns and 100 untraceable bullets to take revenge on whomever they wish. However, the details and pieces of the puzzle are completely lost on someone like me, who hasn’t really been following the title. It’s a terrible issue if you’re looking for a jumping-on point, but if you’ve been reading the series it’s probably pretty good at filling in some of the gaps you’ve been wondering about.
Risso’s art style was tailor-made for this book. He keeps things dark and gritty, with characters that are basically very realistic, flawed people. His scenes set in the past work well too, employing the same style but translating it to fit 16th century warriors, clerics and explorers.
As confused as I was, I still enjoyed this issue more than any issue of Azzarello and Risso’s “Broken City” run on Batman. This is more the story they are suited to tell, and I’m sure legitimate fans of the book will have much better things to say about it than I do.