For those of you who missed it and want something new to look forward to this summer, independent comic writer and illustrator Akumyo (owner of Devour Comics) is delivering a treat. Thieves is a new series about two con artists who find themselves in the middle of a scheme much greater than anything they’ve encountered.
In the opening of the first issue, we’re met with a strange, mysterious scene that foreshadows something ominous before flashing back to the rest of the story. Although the exact nature of the threat is unknown, it is clear that it is life or death, and it’s heavily implied that whatever it is will encapsulate this whole world.
The story takes place in the streets of an imaginary city called Jaizkibel. The people who live there are made up of all sorts of strange creatures, each a mix between humans and animals. The first characters we meet are Clyde and Garrett: two friends who roam the streets looking for people to gamble money from. They’ve got this mastered to the point where making a living of it is easy. The problems begin when they run into someone who can outsmart them on every turn, who knows their tricks better than they do.
The first issue of Thieves came out in March, and the second is coming out later in the summer. The webcomic takes place in the same universe as Partners, another one of Akumyo’s web series, that came out from Fall 2009 to Fall 2010, and was later edited in 2011. Although Thieves is not a direct sequel to Partners, the two are consistent and compatible with each other, and Partners gives a good introduction to Akumyo’s strange world.
The story of Thieves, though interesting, is a little confusing in how it is carried out—a confusion that will hopefully be resolved in later chapters. It’s also marked with language, violence and suggestive material not entirely suitable for children. The artwork, however, is captivating—a stark black, white and gray scheme with red thrown in for occasional emphasis. The characters too are unique, exhibiting traits of the various animals they are mixed with while still possibly echoing with human depth. In addition to the webcomic, the first issue of Thieves (as well as some of Akumyo’s other works) is available here. Every hard copy ordered comes signed and with a free sketch from the author.
I’m looking forward to seeing what the later issues of Thieves brings and seeing more of this creative world. The first issue did leave me with a lot of questions, but I hope to get more familiar with the characters in upcoming months and learning just what the great threat is, and what connection Clyde and Garrett have with it.