Whitechapel is and always will be an area of fascination for the world. To this day Sleuths from around the world want to establish a name for themselves by figuring out one of the great mysteries. Who or what was Jack the Ripper. Some combination of the ultimate cold case, the brutalities of murders, and the romance of the Victorian era, especially with the Spring Heel Jack to add to the mythos, has made it rest on our minds over a century later.
It has consumed the likes of Alan Moore and the Hughes brothers and now, Eric Powell, that comedian of the grotesque takes it on. What better way than through a tale of Billy The Kid and his band of Old Timey Oddities.
Spoule mentioned a friend in England at the end of the last volume, turns out that friend was the Elephantman (taken to an absurdist extreme by Hotz). This allows the reader the chance to see Mr. The Kid’s crudeness in all its glory (well until he starts alley crawling later). Seems he hasn’t changed much. He still talks faster than he can think and doesn’t ever reflect on the words he speaks. You almost have to wonder why Spoule puts up with him.
Seems there is a network of the oddities in the world and Spoule’s friend has called our heroes in because the local freaks are being systematically hunt down as suspects for being the Ripper.
Never mind the Spring Heel or the fact that America’s first serial killer is in town, things get bad when Billy gets slipped something and witnesses a murder!
Powell continues the adventures of this group as if he wrote the last issue of the first volume yesterday. Everything feels the same and if anything, the nifty mileau has upped the greatness of his writing.
Hotz doesn’t slouch either. Brown’s colors are more nuanced than Powell’s were in the first series. It gives the art a pop and actually creates a more eerie feel. The star of the art is the eyes though. The art team creates real emotion and depth through the eyes. They are almost real in their look, shimmering in the light, water welling in them. It is an effect that stands out in a field of exceptional artwork.
A return to form, eerie and funny, god it’s good to have the bandit and his friends back in town!
Knowing that costing one penny shy of four hundred is a lot to ask, Powell throws in a Goon strip. In the first part of the story we see our mob boss and his buddy grilling out and taking it easy, that is until a slack jaw eats all their wieners and the Goon reluctantly steps into action. I hope that after this mini is done it means more of one of my favorite books!
Pull list: Afterlife with Archie, Bodies, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, Coffin Hill, Dead Boy Detectives, The Fade Out, The Goon, Harley Quinn, Hinterkind, Iron Fist: The Living Weapon,The Maxx Maximized, Miracleman, Ms. Marvel, Multiversity, Rasputin, Rocket Raccoon, Sandman: Overture, Silver Surfer, The Walking Dead