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Royal Reviews: Pigs #1

Written by Royal Nonesuch on Tuesday, September 13 2011 and posted in Reviews

The new series Pigs, published by Image, takes us into a world where the Cold War never ended - and is in fact about to turn hot!

Comic Review Cover

Credits & Solicit Info:

Pigs #1 (of 6) (MR)

Story by: Ben McCool & Nate Cosby
Art By: Breno Temura
Cover By: JOCK

Diamond ID:JUL110432
On Sale:September 14, 2011

ISSUE ONE: Hello, Cruel World From writers NATE COSBY & BEN McCOOL(Choker, Memoir), along with hotshot newcomer artist Breno Temura, comes Pigs, a brand new ongoing series to join Image's elite ranks. The story centers around a second-generation KGB Cuban sleeper cell, activated & assigned to overthrow the U.S. government through a series of kidnappings, assassinations and acts of terrorism. But why has the call come now, 50 years after the original cell last heard from Mother Russia?


"You ask me of 1962?  Of the KGB?  These are old things.  You speak of old men.  All of the old men I know are dead."

By all accounts, the Cold War was a tense, nerve-wracking time in the world, with two major superpowers staring across two oceans into each other's eyes, secretly hoping neither side would blink.  Thankfully, nobody had the heart for nuclear annihilation, but as for smaller-scale guerilla tactics, espionage, and wetworks, who knows how much of that really went on?  And who's to say for certain that it ever stopped? 

We know about the failed Bay of Pigs Invasion which led to the Cuban Missile Crisis, but writers Daniel Corey and Ben McCool, who individually came up with two of the more interesting and ambitious Image Comics of the last year in Moriarty and Memoir, respectively, team up for Pigs, a noirish global espionage tale that takes a look at the KGB's response, which waits a generation to come about.  Pigs #1 includes all the standard tropes of this type of story.  In this first issue, we get our fair share of suspicion, secret meetings, codewords, and mysterious men in shadows.  Coupled with a hard-nosed police interrogation and bad attitudes from some of the principle players in two different time periods, Pigs promises to take on weighty plot elements in an expansive geopolitical tale rife with murder and back-room dealings. 

Rendered in gritty, expressive art by newcomer Breno Temura and grungy colors (provided by veteran Christopher Sotomayor) befitting the dirty world these characters live in, Pigs #1 ponders an oncoming storm of global conflict (the present of the issue is "Soon"), and shows us a pretty plausible way that it could come together.  As a first issue, it does a great job of showing us How Things Are and How They Came to Be This Way.  It sets up what should be a pretty expansive story in an economical way.  It's a taut, well-paced comic that drives toward political thriller territory.  Some of the plot elements feel a bit familiar, and some bits of dialogue ring false (and even a bit forced), but everything comes together in an engaging manner.  Certainly, there's a lot of promise in the last page of Pigs #1, which brandishes an image that shows how bad things have gotten for the US while simultaneously making clear just how much worse things will get.  It's a great twist on the old "Commies vs. The USA" storyline, and it can really hook a reader in pretty easily. 

Review by: Royal Nonesuch

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About the Author - Royal Nonesuch

As Senior Media Correspondent (which may be a made-up title), Royal Nonesuch tends to spearhead a lot of film and television content on The Outhouse. He's still a very active participant in the comic book section of the site, though. Nonesuch writes reviews of film, television, and comics, and conducts interviews for the site as well.  You can reach out to him on Twitter or with Email.


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