Death Sentence #1 by Monty Nero and Mike Dowling is a unique approach to the “superhero”, or rather super powered, genre. It, so far, is about three people making their way in the UK with VD. The great thing about VD, other than the fact that it means you have an adventurous sex life, is that you get POWERS! The downside is that this sexually transmitted disease kills you after six months. Published by TITAN and written by Monty Nero who also does the cover art and with art by Mike Dowling it is a fun off the beaten path ride.
The story follows three characters right now. I say right now because these characters have six months to live. After contracting the G+ virus (the virus you get from engaging in sexual relations with people from your Google+ circles?) these three start to show signs of x-men-mutant-like powers. The disease kills you later so who’s to say if we’ll still be enjoying the life and times of Verity, Weasel, and Monty. Maybe they’ll make an impact and pave the way for the next group, ala MISFITS (They are tromping around the same stomping grounds as the hit BBC series).
The twist, which comes late into the first issue, is the Government involvement. After showing up to register herself as a carrier of the virus, Verity finds them to be less than comforting to people in her situation. The registration and the anti-establishment feel certainly touch on our old Marvel-nostalgia-heart-strings. The characters themselves appear to have a variety of powers and with the nature of the virus I can only imagine there is the whole pool of super powers to draw from in future issues. After Verity has her brief encounter with the G-Men we get a glimpse of how things may escalate. Meanwhile, across town, Weasel deals with his own troubles as the darker side of the city seek him out to collect old debts. Monty, the celebrity of the group, seems to be dealing with it the best. He flaunts and jokes his way through an interview and I can guess his troubles will be as deep as the rest of this still water runs. Troubled and gritty this gang is off to a good start if you are a fan of flavor. The story has a good starting point and a fun premise, with it’s choppy art style and colorful characters I have high hopes.
So, breakdown, three people unrelated thus far come to terms in AIDS-like fashion with their new terminal STD which as a bonus grants them different powers. Each deals with it differently. Verity, is sad about the whole mess and tries to deal with it. Weasel tries to revamp his floundering rock career and make good on the six remaining albums as part of his contract, but apparently he’s a wash-up. And Monty, well I can’t tell what he’s doing yet. The style is that of an indy mag, with muted colors and a sketchy style. Tattoos and street trash flavor this London tale. The sex and the drugs aren’t tucked away and the raw material is veryy much open for discussion. It reminds me in a way of Marvel Max titles, or Vertigo with it’s Constantine books from before the New 52. I suspect something will bring these kids together and I suspect the Government may play a villain role (at first). I kind of suspect that the true villain of the series will turn out to be another sexually active deviant with G+ running wild in his blood. I also suspect the book may run it’s course with one of two outcomes; the trio beat the odds and find a cure or they beat the odds die and a new group roles out for volume dos. No matter how you slice it the whole shabang has me kinda hooked and I have a feeling this may be the new Kick Ass. Only time will tell, but I’d still buy a copy (it’s cheaper than playing the stocks).
Maybe this whole thing sucks , but I really like it. Of course you can always disagree with me below or @werewolforigin on twitter. Check back later, I will be reviewing issue #2 very soon. THE END