Loose Ends #1
(W) Jason Latour
(A) Chris Brunner, Rico Renzi
No one seemed to notice Sonny Gibson as he stepped back into “The Hideaway,” a dusty little honky-tonk nestled off the Carolina highway. But before the night was over, Sonny would be on the run—from the law, from the criminals, even from himself. LOOSE ENDS is a gritty, slow-cooked, Southern crime romance that follows a winding trail down Tobacco Road, through the war-torn streets of Baghdad, and into the bright lights and bloody gutters of South Florida. From JASON LATOUR, co-creator of Eisner-winning SOUTHERN BASTARDS and the writer of Spider-Gwen, CHRIS BRUNNER (SOUTHERN BASTARDS, Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight), and RICO RENZI (Spider-Gwen, Squirrel Girl).
Loose Ends is one of those books that’s going to be hard to review. There’s some real problems with the art, and I hate the writing, but overall it’s a really solid book. I think it’s a classic of example of knowing your art so well, that you know exactly what you can get wrong.
Let’s start with the writing. There’s very little story being told here, and what is there has almost nothing to do with the next page. It can be a little confusing, and it’s more than a little frustrating to jump around like it does. I absolutely hate what they do with the dialogue, too. I will never understand why an artist chooses to make their work intentionally hard to read. Just use actual words, and trust your talent with them, and the atmosphere of the art, to convery those personalities. There’s no need to re-create every slur or lisp a character has with spelling.
The art changes drastically throughout the book. There’s fuzzy panels, sketch panels, and impressionistic panels. Sometimes the characters are drawn perfectly, and sometimes they’re a mess. It’s all so uneven it can feel random.
But it works really well! Every wonky detail may stand out as you read through, but at the end, all you’re left with is the impression of a slick movie trailer. Lots of images that don’t always fit together, snippets of a disjointed story you trust them to bring together in the end, and visuals that make you want to watch it over and over. Loose Ends #1 is way more than the sum of its parts, and I can’t wait for more. In fact, after reading it and making sense of it all, the part I liked least was right on the cover – that little blurb promising ONLY four issues!