Nothing says 1920’s like Prohibition and mobsters, but throw in a heapin’ helpin’ of mountain folk, chain gangs, plus a little fur and fangs? Well, then you got a recipe for Moonshine #10 from Image Comics.
Writer: Brian Azzarello
Artist: Eduardo Risso
Cover Artist: Eduardo Risso
Publisher: Image Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: May 16, 2018
Previously in Moonshine: Lou Pirlo has not had a good day, not for quite a while. Barely surviving after a falling out between his mobster bosses and the mountain-born bootleggers he had been sent to negotiate with, there are a lot of dead back in them thar hills. Add to that, being infected with the curse of lycanthropy, thrown from a train, and picked up by the local law enforcement, he probably could use a break. Unfortunately, the snake that bit him in the swamp while part of a chain gang seems to have kilt him, or has it? Lou wakes up still in lockdown and gets to have a talk with one of his dead gangster friends, and that’s just in the first few pages!
ALL ABOARD THE MISERY TRAIN
With part four of “Misery Train” Brian Azzarello and Eduardo Risso continue the story of Lou Pirlo, mob tough guy, ladies man, and current chain gang member. Things are continuing to go downhill for poor Lou. Throughout the series, he has been visited by the ghost of his dead little sister, and after his own major brush with dead (i.e., he died but got “better?”) he is getting a visit from Fat Tony, one of his mobster friends who “went to sleep with the fishes” a few issue prior. Meanwhile, in the mountains, the remnants of the Holt family are preparing to put their adopted son and resident werewolf, Enos, in the ground, while an old Italian enforcer and his team seem to be pursuing their own agenda, which does not include suffering a werewolf to live.
Back on the chain gang… anybody got an almanac? I just need to check what phase the moon is in. Yea, the situation is about to get even hairier for old Lou. And he thought the prison food was bad.
DIG MY GRAVE, WITH A SILVER SPADE…
Brian Azzarello and Eduardo Risso could tell the story of how the phone book was printed and still manage to pack it with more smarts and swank than any other ten books on the market. From Azzarello’s fluid dialogue and compelling storylines to Risso’s mic dropping women and amazing page structure, they are one of the top creative teams and anything they produce can almost be guaranteed gold.
Brian Azzarello captures the feel of the classic mobster movies like White Heat and Little Caesar, runs them through a blender with Deliverance and Next of Kin, garnishes it with some Cool Hand Luke by way of Company of Wolves and serves it as a master course in how to smoothly mesh together multiple genres that usually wouldn’t work. Whenever he is given reign to run with his story, we all win. When paired up with Eduardo Risso, it’s just seamless and goes down oh so smooth.
Eduardo Risso has such a distinctively clean and suave style of line work, it is instantly recognizable. Everything Azzarello is to the written word, Risso is to the visual art. From his imaginative and iconic covers, his super sultry women, and the little stories happening in the backgrounds, his art tells of a parallel journey that is a wonder to view.
BOTTOM LINE: TAKE IT HOME IN A BROWN BAG
This is the real deal, Grade-A, 100 Proof stuff. As good as their other recent collaborations, this feels closer to a return to the days of 100 BULLETS and JONNY DOUBLE. Tough guys who are too tough for their own good, sexy women who aren’t afraid of using it, and bad, bad, BAD guys that make you actually root for the lesser of the evils.
But be aware, this vintage is not for everybody. By virtue of the time of history in which it occurs, there is some language and situations that not everyone will be comfortable with. It is for a mature audience, but if you have experience with this teams non-superhero work, that should come as no surprise.
Moonshine #10 is top-shelf product and should be poured into your collection and savored often.