I was wandering through my local Comic Book Shop late last year, a magical and almost enchanted sort of Hole-In-The-Wall Sanctuary that smells like Hogwarts, when a certain Graphic Novel Cover caught my eye. Beautiful and captivating, it sucked me right in and without a second thought I picked it up and skimmed through it like all great works I consider on a consistent basis.
It was called The Last Days of American Crime. It was Written by Rick Remender and Arted by Greg Tocchini. As for that strikingly magnetic Cover Art that sucked in my Indie Soul with just a glance to it’s magnanimous thrall, that was of course none other than the brilliant work of Alex Maleev.
The Last Days of American Crime are set to occur in a time not far from our own. A nation in panic breeds more panic as a law is set to be passed that will change the course of modern day criminality completely. Within no time at all the America Citizens of Remender’s tale are set to be subject to a neurological inhibitor that will make it completely impossible to ever act out a crime. However, before this signal can begin transmitting, three deadly souls will attempt to commit the last great American Heist.
Set in California, The Last Days of American Crime begins by showing us Graham Bricke, a man well of years who has lived hard. An addict, both of alcohol and more illicit things, Bricke just wants to finally escape the ghosts of his past. Of course, as Remender and the rest of us all know, nothing is ever that simple.
The mastermind of this great heist, Bricke finds himself left with no other choice than to team up with a young couple as crazy and sexy as they are dangerous. Kevin Cash, a clever fox of a man who can’t sit still but seems to know everything you’re up to and just how to make you pay for it, and his captivating fiancee Shelly Dupree. Lovely Miss Dupree, who might be playing the most dangerous game of them all.
While it is true that The Last Days of American Crime is a Comic Book rich with both brilliant violence and dazzling repartee, it is also one of deep honesty. Remender takes great strides to remind us of the social unrest at the passing of such an unconstitutional and extreme initiative, while also playing true to Bricke’s own constant struggle with addiction.
Oh yes. Remender’s great writing shines through as he gives us not only a Comic Book that we can escape in, but a world and cast of perfect characters so real we could stay there forever.
Remender is aided in this flawless act of creation by the beautiful and sweeping Comic Book Art of Greg Tocchini. Each page seems to be painted right out of the streets of California, from Los Angeles to Inglewood you feel as though you are wandering streets so familiar I suspect that I myself might have wandered past them in my own time out here in the City of Angels. Tocchini’s Comic Book tapestry does not stop at just backgrounds. No, each expression, each act of sex and violence, each drop of blood and fear is perfectly detailed out for the reader with just enough surrealism to make it completely theirs.
Lastly, in The Last Days of American Crime, there are Alex Maleev’s fearless covers to guide you home. Home to that place where the fiction is almost so real, you feel as though you’ve lived it all before. Maleev’s flawless Comic Cover Art is the prefect slice of pulp icing to glaze the brilliant cakes that are Tochchin’s own covers in the way that only true greats can.
Oh yes. These three great Comic Minds planned the greatest Last American Heist That Never Was, I highly suggest you read it and pass it on, your Comic Book Shelf will thank you for it.
Mine already has. – N