DEAD MAN’S RUN #2 (Cover Date: April 2012)
Story by: Greg Pak
Art by: Tony Parker
Colours by: David Curiel
Letters by: Josh Reed
Cover by: Tony Parker
Publisher: Aspen Comics
Cover Price: $3.50
The opening chapters of this saga have been refreshing giving their unique and enthralling version of a man stuck in Hell. Combined with some excellent art, Aspen are sitting on a gem of a book and with this issue, not as many questions are answered as more questions thrown up just to further entice the reader with what is turning out to be a balls to the wall thriller.
This issue sees Sam’s emotions become a possible liability as writer Greg Pak lays out the inner circles of Hell in front of us. In explaining how he has a perfect memory of the layout of Hell to his cellmate Sam gets into a fight with him that send both men down into the next level of Hell where they narrowly escape an attack by a giant crocodile. They are both quickly put to work harvesting Angel blood, which is gold to be traded with the surface world by a creepy looking set of guards who are visibly enthralled by the mere thought of the value of the blood. It is while harvesting the blood, that Sam sees his ticket out of Hell, follow the money. With some darkly comedic lines of narrative and a plot that isn’t rushed and paced nicely, I have to say this book is a nice addition to anyone’s pull list.
There is as much information given about the world around Sam and company with the art of Tony Parker as there is with the writing. As soon as they land in the thick jungle terrain, almost every page throws up some amazing visuals which are just stunning to look at. Parker deserves a ton of praise for his work on this book so far. The pages where we see the skeletal remains of the Angels are simply astonishing and yet again with this issue the colors of David Curiel stand out as a big benefit to the overall look of the book.
Greg Pak is taking his time crafting this tale and I’m perfectly okay with that. He has managed to create a protagonist in Sam that is easily relatable as he wants to save his sister who is in Hell somewhere. His stroke of luck memorizing the map in the Warden’s office means that Sam’s very survival in the book is essential as he gathers a small group of fellow prisoners who wouldn’t mind escaping Hell with him. As we move forward with this absorbing read, I am firmly entrenched in what could be a sleeper hit of the year.