And shepherds we shall be, for Thee, my Lord, for Thee. Power hath descended forth from Thy hand, that our feet may swiftly carry out Thy command. So we shall flow a river forth to Thee, and teeming with souls shall it ever be.
As I mentioned previously, I am a huge fan of the Boondock Saints. It blew me away when I first saw it, and the subsequent 10 times in a row I watched it. I’ve even seen the sequel a few times. So when I checked my email imagine my delight to see my review copy of the new trade paperback for Boondock Saints: In Nomine Patris, the new book complied of the 6 issue series. We learn the violent and chaotic beginning of Il Duce as well as see what the brothers, Connor and Murphy MacManus, have been up to in Ireland. Written by Troy Duffy and JB Love, with artwork by Guus Floor. Released by Infusion and 12 Gauge comics.
The story starts with several plots already intertwining. We have the boys shaking down one of Yakavetta’s men regarding a recent murder. We then jump to Il Duce detailing his history and his rise to infamy as a notorious hit man. When the mob murdered his father, his humanity died within and what was born from that was a ruthless murderer. With his best friend Louie, the two form a plan to get revenge on the men who killed his father. Louie has several connections with the mob families and can orchestrate the attacks on them. After avenging his father, Noah is not able to stop and plans to wage war against all of the mob.
At first the mafia families are pleased with the recent rash of deaths, as the ones who have been whacked were not the most pleasant of people, even by mob standards. We cut to the brothers shaking down some more of Yakavetta’s men, and sending a very clear message that they mean business. Back in the 1960s we see Louie meeting with the elder Yakavetta, trying to arrange a protection deal for him and Noah, now going by Il Duce. The deal is, they will knock off all the other mob bosses and underlings, as long as his crew doesn’t come after them. And that is when the violence comes pouring in. The first family on their list is the Patriarcha family, and they hit them hard. The young Don Ricci of course sees this as far to convenient and starts accusing all the other bosses, pushing heavy towards Don Yakavetta.
Back in the preset the brothers launch their attack on the current Yakavetta’s men and add a few more bodies to their count. While Il Duce’s story is just getting started. Yakavetta tells Louie that they must tread lightly on their next hit, and show some form of finesse, of course that doesn’t go as easily planned and Don Ricci really fires up his accusations, as one of his own men winds up dead. A small girl is killed in a hit and run and Il Duce is readying his weapons. Louie warns that this man works for their employer but Il Duce is not deterred.
The brothers then recall a time back in Ireland when they found the body of a child buried in the marsh and decide to find the mother and find the man responsible. Back in the 60s, Louie meets with Yakavetta and comes up with a plan to throw the heat off of him, as well as letting Il Duce doll out justice against the murderous driver. Yakavetta agrees to the hit on his own family and afterwards, makes an uneasy truce with Don Ricci. Back in Ireland the boys are summoned by a priest who heard a disturbing confession, one which even the sacred bond of God could not keep him silent. The brothers justice comes quick and brutal to the man. Il Duce’s justice was just getting started. Now that the families were shaken and tensions started rising, he goes full on psycho and hits whoever he can, whenever he can. Louie barely has a hold of him anymore and the streets run rampant with blood. As more mobsters come up dead, Louie sees that his employer may very well be in Il Duce’s path and now he must figure a way to protect his own investment in this mob war.
I must say at first I was a little worried when I started reading this book. Normally movie tie-in comics are not that good. They usually hire on writers who aren’t familiar with the source material and they just slap something together. Luckily this is not the case for In Nomine Patris, as the writer/director of Boondock Saints and All Saints Day, Troy Duffy had a hand in creating this book. You can tell right away as the dialogue takes hold front and center. Not missing a beat from the movies, complete with witty banter between the brothers MacManus and filled with great quotes from Noah, the writing really stands out in this series. No punches are pulled in terms of violence either, with a worthy body count and no short supply of obscenities. There is a nice foreword as well from Sean Patrick Flannery, and you can really tell he loves playing the character, Connor MacManus. The plot weaves in and out from the 1960s with Noah’s rise as a prominent psychopathic assassin for and against the mob, and the adventures of the brothers tracking down serial killers in their new home in Ireland. The stories in Ireland play out more like a hyper-violent episode of Criminal Minds or Law and Order, while the story of Il Duce is a pretty straight forward gangster tale. It covers the segments from All Saints Day, as well as going into a chaotic finale, showing how out of control Il Duce becomes. The artwork didn’t impress me as much at first, but I was never a fan of this style. However after the second issue it grew on me and actually complimented the story nicely. The characters all look like their actor counterparts, and the violence is illustrated nicely. Much like the movies, it is gratuitous without being overly gory.
This is a definite buy for Boondock Saints fans, as this story is what I would have liked to have seen in the second movie. Fast talking, fast shooting, and a lot of killing, with minimal joke characters. There is humor in the book for sure, but not in the, wacky sidekick, or dopey henchman kind of way. Everything is played straight, much like the first film, which should satisfy most fans. The book will be in shelves this coming November, and you can pre-order the collector’s editions at www.boondockstore.com. I shouldn’t need to even say this, but the book is very mature, so keep the young ones away.