He may have been taken down, but don’t count the Kingpin out.
Previously in Kingpin: The Kingpin has done bad things. Deplorable things. He has cheated the law. He has blackmailed rivals. He has killed. But that’s all in the past. – via Marvel
TO BUILD A BETTER IMAGE
Wilson Fisk isn’t the nicest person in the world. He’s horrible. Yet time and time again, the Kingpin becomes front and center in some money making scheme, and ends up as the toast of the town. But Wilson being Wilson still has an image problem. Behind his back, I expect high society laughs at him, and the lowlives, while still fearing him, know he’s no better than they are. As this issue opens, Wilson Fisk believes the best way to solve his image problem is to hire Sarah Dewey, a local reporter, to write his biography. Kingpin #1 is a view of Kingpin’s world through the eyes of Sarah.
Make no mistake, this book is all about Kingpin. How he manipulates, how he charms, how he takes action against those that wrong him. While Sarah may be the central character in this issue, Kingpin’s shadow weighs heavy in every single panel and page. Kingpin #1 is like watching a psychological thriller in the theater where you keep screaming at the actress not to go down the hallway (but she always does). From page one, every part of my being wants to yell at Sarah to not do what she is about to do, and then falling for Kingpin’s sad story the same way she does. It is an incredibly effective piece of writing, and others would do well to follow what Matthew Rosenberg is serving up in this issue.
A LITTLE HEAVY ON THE INK
Ben Torres’s art is really interesting. There are times in this first issue where I really admire and like what I see on the page. I think it is the eyes. While the faces bounce back and forth between extreme cartoony and something that looks like early Frank Miller, the eyes convey everything you need to know about the characters. It’s really magical especially considering how the heavy inking and weird splatter marks in certain panels take me completely out of the story.
I don’t hate the art, but I don’t love it either.
BOTTOM LINE: SURPRISING
Since really getting into Kingpin’s backstory in the Netflix Daredevil series, I’ve been more and more interested in learning about the villain. This new series from Marvel seemed like a perfect opportunity to do it, and I’m really glad I grabbed this issue. I didn’t know what to expect in the first issue, but somehow I feel like I got exactly what subconsciously I expected to find – an engaging story and fascinating characters make Kingpin #1 a strong comic to pick up. I’m looking forward to issue two already.