KISS Volume 2 Issue 1: Dressed to Kill
Hey, hey, have you heard the news? All hell's breakin' loose.
July 17, 2012 9:51 amStephen Harvey
What makes a super hero super? Superman can fly, Wonder Woman has her Lasso of Truth and super strength, Batman is 100% certifiably bad-ass, but what makes a hero super? Now I don't want to player hate on the Justice League, the X-Men or the Avengers, but until they can breathe fire and spit blood, they'll always be second-best to KISS!
IDW Publishing has taken super heroes to next-level ass-kicking with KISS: Dressed to Kill – Issue 1. Kicking off the second volume of KISS comics (at least on IDW), Dressed to Kill takes us to 1920's Chicago. The entire city is under the rule of a powerful mobster known as Wicked Lester. Lester controls all illicit activities in the Windy City, from bootlegging to prostitution to gambling and everything in between. Little does anyone know, outside of a select few, that Wicked Lester is not your typical Wiseguy Goodfella, but is actually a powerful demon straight from the fiery furnaces of blackest Hell.
Lester is aided by a powerful sorceress known as She. With the help of She, Lester strengthens his stranglehold on the city. At first, She seems to be willing serve Wicked Lester, even though she constantly rejects his carnal desires. In truth, she's actually a force for good, secretly manipulating things behind the scenes. When a lowly mobster-turned-informant is brought before Lester for his punishment, She reveals that he is an actually an avatar for a time-less being of justice known as the Celestial and must reform The-Four-Who-Are-One, an all-powerful force of good throughout the galaxy. The remaining three include the Demon, the Star Child and the Cat, all of whom must unite to stop Wicked Lester for summoning the Destroyer, the ultimate embodiment of evil and destruction.
Now that you know the plot, what about the art? Jamal Igle (Green Lantern, Supergirl, G.I. Joe) brings the story to life with bright, bold colors and clean, detailed lines. Things like facial expressions really pop, offering a nice viewing experience for the reader. Igle really shines in drawing special effects, such as fire or ribbons of glimmering mystic energy. It really sets the scene and immerses the reader into feeling like they're in 1929 Chicago. Igle also excels in capturing the look and feel of the classic KISS makeup, so much that The-Four-Who-Are-One resemble the original KISS lineup and not the current one (sorry Tommy, as good as you are, you will never be as good as Ace).
Putting words to the paper is a task that belongs to Chris Rydall (Chief Creative Officer and Editor-In-Chief of IDW) and he does a great job, for the most part. The dialog is simple, yet effective, keeping the story moving at a brisk pace without seeming rushed or too heavy handed. However, there are times when the dialog can seem a bit corny, but it's hardly a deterrent to the over-all feel of the story.
I will fully admit, being a self-appointed General in the KISS Army, I'll pretty much jump behind anything with the KISS brand on it. But I feel this series has enough pull to appeal to non-KISS fans too. Fans of fantasy and sorcery fiction should feel right at home with this story and you don't have to be a fan of KISS to follow the story (although die-hard KISS fans will appreciate the random references to the band scattered throughout the issue).
Issue 2 hits newsstands on 7/18, so you're not too far into the series to worry about missing anything. If you're a fan of the Swords & Sorcery genre or other related fantasy staples, you'll like Dressed to Kill and should pick it up (may I suggest a purchase from MidTown Comics for all your comics and collectible needs?).
Buy it, slip it out of its bag and board, crank up "God of Thunder" to 11 and enjoy.
|FIND YOUR GEEK RATING
out of 10