Marcus is forced to deal with the aftermath of Chico’s death and carefully balance himself between Saya and Maria in Deadly Class #7.
Rick Remender pours a lot of exposition into Deadly Class #7. This issue is toted as being a great jumping-on point for new readers and it is surprisingly true. All the requisite details to understand the world of Deadly Class make it to the page using a familiar storytelling device, but really, really works.
Marcus speaks to his relationship with Maria (who recently killed her boyfriend in defense of Marcus), and its anarchist nature. He journals his inner-most private thoughts in a composition notebook, unspectacular in its appearance, familiar, as with the storytelling device; readers are caught up on the ins and outs of Marcus’ day job (at a comic book shop, no less), and his attraction to fellow class member Saya, which circles back to creating even more tension with his girlfriend … but more on that later.
The stream-of-consciousness narrative throughout Deadly Class #7 is interrupted by Willie and Co. to be dragged off to a party. Marcus’ composition notebook is left in his dorm room to the care of his roommate Shabnam who is not cool enough to be invited along to the party. This particular party is hosted by a young man named Lex (a familiar comic book character name to be certain).
In true Rick Remender fashion, even amongst the most punk of punk kids, protagonist Marcus must be bodily removed from the party for fear of someone else winding up dead. Marcus carries this level of terminal uniqueness without pretension and goes on to join Saya in the graveyard. It is there that an attempt is made on Marcus’ life in the latter part of Deadly Class #7 that drives some of the concerns from his journal entry home in a very real way.
The final three pages of Deadly Class #7 feature the biggest betrayal of the series thus far. I won’t spoil it here, but it is this twist that proves Remender a master storyteller capable of plotting compelling narratives as much as presenting characters to the readers that are too cool for school. Yes, Deadly Class #7 is a great issue and, yes, it is a great jumping on point for new readers.
ANGRY ELECTRIC ART
Wes Craig could not be a more perfect artist for Deadly Class #7. His style is minimalist with little more than enough lines to get his figures and settings across to the readers and although the design of it all is very clean it enhances the punk rock, emotionally raw tone of the series.
Addressing further the tone of Deadly Class #7, as Marcus becomes increasingly frustrated either with Lex or the character who makes an attempt on his life, his teen righteous teen angst veritably jumps off the page. Every scene Marcus is in he electrifies.
Colourist Lee Loughridge deserves a lot of credit for the strong visuals of Deadly Class #7. Each scene is coloured very deliberately (blue for calmness or a false sense of security, yellow for disdain, red for anger), to heighten the emotional notes that are being struck throughout the scene. Loughridge’s work highlights Craig’s linework the way Craig’s art serves to bolster Remender’s work.
The art of Deadly Class #7 is easily as important as the writing and, frankly, is just as compelling to look at.
THE BOTTOM LINE: JUMP IN THIS JUMPING ON POINT
If you haven’t been playing along so far then Deadly Class #7 is a great place to make your start. Marcus remains an edgy protagonist surrounded by crazy people at a school for assassins and gets bitterly betrayed at the end. The creative team works together like a dream and you ought to check it out.