Deadly Class – Vol. 7: Love Like Blood by by Rick Remender · Wes Craig – Comic Book Review

Deadly Class – Vol. 7: Love Like Blood by by Rick Remender · Wes Craig - Comic Book Cover

If you were a school psychologist at the King’s Dominion Atelier of the Deadly Arts, you would definitely be stuffing benzodiazepines into your own mouth by the handful. Rick Remender and Wes Craig’s Deadly Class seems perfect for apprentice assassins at first glance, but in reality, it wouldn’t work.

A high school for the children of criminals? Where students trained for killing roam armed?! Come on!

You’ve probably heard of the dramaturgical principle that if a loaded gun appears on stage, sooner or later it will be fired. Well, for those attending the assassin class, firing the gun – with classmates in the crosshairs – is part of the prescribed curriculum.

The King’s Dominion Atelier of the Deadly Arts is essentially a psychopath training ground, which would only work until the first freshly graduated seniors returned home to mommy and daddy. However, instead of a resourceful karate champion, ninja, or commando, the parents could welcome home unpredictable wrecks devoid of any human emotions. Afterward, dissatisfied ancestors from all over the world would flock to San Francisco to demand a refund of tuition… and incidentally, to chop the entire teaching staff into tiny pieces.

Rick Remender, the master of the most unbelievable twists, organizes a class trip to Mexico in the seventh part of the Deadly Class. And you, the reader, are supposed to believe that Marcus, one of the most repulsive protagonists in comic literature, successfully takes on a group of Yakuza. Man, he got expelled! Not to mention that he only attended for a year, most of which he was totally high on drugs!

So, do you believe it? Okay then.

If it’s been a relatively long time since you read the previous part, you’re in luck because you might not remember exactly why you hate the characters in the book. (Just know that you hate them.) Perhaps this is one reason why you don’t find the seventh part of the Deadly Class as annoying as the previous ones. But it could also be because of the continuous action.

Fortunately, the blood-soaked, ninja-like action is precisely interrupted by the more lyrical parts. These, almost without exception, work now. There is death, a turning point, truly profound twists, but even in their extremeness, they stay grounded in reality.

If you were to start acquainting yourself with Rick Remender and Wes Craig’s series with this part, you actually wouldn’t find much to criticize.

And when Saya takes center stage, the character who hasn’t made a complete fool of herself in the series so far, you’ve reached the climax of “Love like blood,” but for real the whole series. The power combined with a sense of inferiority is capable of astonishing things – and, of course, paves the way for a very pleasant future revenge.

But the best is saved for last: Master Lin, who resembles a small, acholic*, sausage-shaped piece of poop, remarkably does not appear in the panels of this comic!

7.5/10 (75%)

Deadly Class – Vol. 7: Love Like Blood by Rick Remender (writer) · Wes Craig (illustrator)
120 pages, Paperback
Published in 2018 by Image Comics

acholic* referring to a pathological lack of bile, characterized by a white color

Saga: Volume One by Brian K. Vaughan · Fiona Staples – Comic Book Review

Saga: Volume One by Brian K. Vaughan · Fiona Staples - comic book cover

“Am I shitting? It feels like I’m shitting!”

Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples’ comic series “Saga” begins with these remarkeble words, right in the midst of a childbirth, and if you gather from all this that MAYBE shocking you is the goal, you’re not entirely wrong… But of course, this is the 21st century, hello, who doesn’t give a FUCK? who doesn’t give a good goddamn?

However, I wouldn’t particularly recommend this work to the prudish, as this is not the ONLY case. For example, since you see dangling male genitalia several times, you also visit a brothel planet where you stumble upon an orgy. Then there’s a character with more legs than arms and more eyes than ears – and you might start to doubt yourself whether is it possible that you’re aberrant a bit when you think that this beautiful creature is very sexy?

But yes, it’s very possible!

Moreover, she goes through all her scenes in a monokini. So, if you didn’t know what arachnophilia is, now you definitely will!

And that’s not even the point.

The point is, there is the largest planet in the universe, and it has a moon, and they are at war with each other. To avoid destroying their own celestial bodies, they OUTSOURCE the war to ALL other planets. This is, of course, nonsense because it would be enough if they didn’t go near each other, and that’s it, but other than that, almost everything is fine in the comic series “Saga.”

The two main characters on opposing sides fall in love (one has wings and is SUSPECTED to be a huge slut, the other one is a conscientious objector with horns on his head and a cool little magic sword). They have a child, and from now on, the three of them are against the world(s).

On these worlds, you encounter a tremendous brainstorm of ideas: from screen-headed noblemen to ghost-babysitters, spaceships that are bred in the forest, EVERYTHING is there like in an amusement park. As if they mixed The Fifth Element with Star Wars, Harry Potter, and a trophy catalog, but just to be safe, they threw in a bit of Lone Wolf and Cub.

If you really wanted to nitpick about the work, you would find very few handles: You know since Once upon a time that every spell has a price, but this price shouldn’t be any random stupidity. Oh, and the part set on Sextillion is slightly out of character.

But otherwise, it’s adorable.

8.5/10 (85%)

Saga: Volume One by Brian K. Vaughan & Fiona Staples
160 pages, Paperback
Published in 2012 by Image Comics

(Saga: Volume One collects Saga #1-6.)

Locke ​& Key Master Edition 1. by Joe Hill · Gabriel Rodriguez – Comic Book Review

Locke ​& Key Master Edition 1. (Locke & Key 1-2.) by Joe Hill · Gabriel Rodriguez

A mother, after the tragic death of her husband, moves back to her childhood home, the KEY HOUSE, with her three children… where various keys scattered throughout the house open different doors, leading to physical places, like our dear Aunt Maggie’s pantry, or sometimes, right into someone’s BRAIN… Clever!

However, someone else is also looking for these darn keys.

Who is it? Well, that person is certainly a scumbag…

And this is probably the first comic book I didn’t get bored reading. Despite Joe Hill’s dreadfully overwritten, seemingly novel-like, hefty brick (Spore, NOS4A2), the story is particularly tight. It’s thrilling, twisty, dramatic, touching, funny. And occasionally a bit sexy too.

(I only encountered one problem during my enjoyment: the text bubbles were filled with such tiny letters that I had to borrow my hundred-year-old grandma’s eyeglasses from about six or seven eyeglass generations ago. From then on, I could view the font size quite differently, thankfully.)

I wouldn’t wholeheartedly recommend Hill and Rodriguez’s work to homophobes due to the prominent LGBTQ+ elements.

Nor to the faint-hearted due to the killings.

As for the visuals? Well, damn beautiful.

8.5/10

Locke ​& Key Master Edition 1. (Locke & Key 1-2.) by Joe Hill · Gabriel Rodriguez
328 pages, Hardcover
Published: June 2, 2015 by IDW Publishing

The Locke & Key Master Edition Volume 1 features the first two story arcs, “Welcome to Lovecraft” and “Headgames”