Title: Deadly Class
Author: Rick Remender
Artist: Wesley Craig
Type: Series (Focus: Vol. 1 TP)
Publisher: Image Comics
Publishing Date: July 29, 2014
Marcus Lopez hates school. His grades suck. The jocks are hassling his friends. He can’t focus in class. But the jocks are the children of Joseph Stalin’s top assassin, the teachers are members of an ancient league of assassins, the class he’s failing is “Dismemberment 101,” and his crush has a double-digit body count. Welcome to the most brutal high school on earth, where the world’s top crime families send the next generation of assassins to be trained. Murder is an art. Killing is a craft. At Kings Dominion School for the Deadly Arts, the dagger in your back isn’t always metaphorical. (Source)
I started reading this series upon the request of the owner of my favorite comic book shop. This is another one from Image Comics and it’s definitely living up to the high standards that they have recently placed.
This story is different from others I’ve read. It’s about death, economic inequalities, and social outcasts. It doesn’t run head first into the action. In fact, Remenber reveals who Marcus is and his back story one layer at a time. It deepens the impact and our connection to him because it is his story. There’s no mistaking that and I love it.
Marcus’ interaction with other characters, helping them in their antics, slowly evolves his character. And that with the flashbacks, help to give us a sense of who he is even if he is a bit disjointed. The fact that there’s still so much more to uncover about him really drives you forward.
The art is phenomenal. Most scenes are fully rendered, but don’t seem cluttered. I enjoyed how it changes slightly by what Marcus consumes (drugs) or when a flashback takes place. It adds a little extra “something” that keeps the story interesting.
I don’t want to go too in-depth and give away everything, so I’ll just wrap up by saying that this is a thought-provoking story wrapped in beautiful art. Definitely a great read if you aren’t a little squeamish.
As always, thanks for reading,