Book: The Fade Out #1
Writer: Ed Brubaker
Art: Elizabeth Breitweiser and Sean Phillips
Summary from Comixology: “The first project from their groundbreaking five-year deal at Image will have ED BRUBAKER and SEAN PHILLIPS fans, old and new, at the edge of their seats, as they weave an epic crime story unlike anything they’ve done before. Hollywood – 1948. A noir film stuck in endless reshoots. A writer plagued with nightmares from the war and a dangerous secret. An up-and-coming starlet’s suspicious death. And a maniacal Studio Mogul and his Security Chief who will do anything to keep the cameras rolling before the Post-War boom days come crashing down. THE FADE OUT is the most ambitious series yet from the award-winning Noir Masters. Bonus: This 40-PAGE FIRST ISSUE features more story pages, as well as exclusive back pages articles that are only in these single issues!”
I must confess that I have not been in the “Ed Brubaker/Sean Phillips Creator Owned Properties” train. My alarm didn’t go off and then I couldn’t find my pants, it was a whole ordeal that caused me to get to the station late. I haven’t read “Criminal” or “Incognito”, but I have read the first few issues of “Fatale”, and I plan on reading the rest of the series. I just got distracted and never got around to finishing it. I am however a big fan of Ed’s work on Batman and Captain America so I got that going for me right?
“The Fade Out” is a crime-story comic in the absolute best possible way. As I was reading it I thought to myself, “This is exactly like an old murder-mystery movie but with 100% more cursing and sex.” And there’s really not even that much sex to be honest. There’s nothing exploitative here. Ed even makes a point to address in his letter to the reader in the back of the book. They are setting the scene for what Hollywood-life was like in the late 1940’s. They do a hell of a job too. The dialogue is perfectly crafted to match the era and the setting details are very carefully arraigned and placed.
The artwork is integral to help capture the noir feel of the story. Phillips’ detailed pencil-work partnered with Breitweiser’s coloring is a match made in comic book heaven. His shading is flawlessly executed, and her ability to to use color to balance the panels but still make certain ones stand out from the rest of them is a skill I cannot say is rivaled by anyone else in the business today.
I could bulls–t you here, but I’m just gonna be honest and say there’s nothing bad about the book and anyone who says they found something bad is a liar and a coward.
The Final Say-
If you’re a fan of what these guys have been doing with their past team-up-projects, then you have no reason to not jump on this. It’s the quality storytelling and artwork you’ve come to appreciate and love from this crew. If you’re new to their stuff, I still reccomend you grab this issue and check it out. Especially if you’re the kind of person who likes comics but maybe isn’t all that into superheros, I think you’ll really enjoy The Fade Out. I give this book a solid 4 out of 4. I already can’t wait until the next issue and I’m normally a very patient comic book reader.
Head down to your local comic shop and see if they have any copies left. I got mine at Comic Collector Live: The Store. If your shop has any left, BUY ONE, or miss out on a great new title!