Review: Kingpin #1

Kingpin #1

By Matthew Rosenberg, Ben Torres, and Jordan Boyd

This was easily my favourite comic to come out this week. The art is gorgeous. The story is tight. The paneling is dynamic. What impressed me the most about this issue was Rosenberg is not trying to recreate or re-imagine the Kingpin. Rosenberg knows who the Kingpin is and he knows that the reader knows who the Kingpin is. So, this is not a story of new revelation. There is no pretense. Rather, it has the feel of Dante’s Inferno with our main character slowly descending through the world that the Kingpin inhabits.

And this main character is an incredible edition to the Daredevil/Kingpin mythos. It would have been easy to just tell the story centering around Wilson Fisk. Instead, Rosenberg creates someone new. Sarah Dewey is our Dante. She is a flawed, struggling reporter that finds herself pulled into the Kingpin’s orbit. I thought she had the immediate authenticity of a Ben Urich. Rosenberg makes us care about her –feel like we know her- right from the beginning. And then he shows us that there’s more to her than we thought.

When she begins her descent who is her Virgil? Who is her Guide through Hell? The Kingpin himself. Setting the reader up for a journey with an untrustworthy guide. We know what we are seeing isn’t going to be the truth. We know that it is going to be dangerous.

There’s a flow to the scenes that exemplifies what is best about this medium. Take the party scene as an example: The panels are smaller, crowded, word heavy. Subconsciously, it puts the reader into the feel of a large get-together. The loudness. The press of people.

Later, during a confrontation in a park, the paneling is more open. The images almost float within the space of the page giving an impression of distance and isolation.

My only complaint about this story is that it can’t be an ongoing series. There’s a confrontation coming for Sarah Dewey. Dante met Satan stuck at the bottom of Hell. And Dewey has her own inevitable meeting with the Devil approaching.

I hope she survives the experience.

Go to your Local Comic Book Store (LCS) and find yourself a copy.

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2 Comments

  1. So kingpin has been more of a peripheral character for me. Dad has always held a little fascination but only for a few issues or story arcs. The Dante comparison has me intrigued and I have been thinking of picking up some punisher to boot as I see a correlation between him and bloodshot over at valiant. Maybe it’s just me. But perhaps this is a mini series that will rekindle and get me back in with DD and punisher because of the tie in via kingpin.

    Like

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