Dick Tracy: Dead or Alive #3

80%
80%
Two Fisted Fun

There’s plenty of grit hidden within the pages of this book – characters killed, brutal crime lords orchestrating the framing of a good cop, rampant corruption, all under the guise of a colorful romp through a city seemingly populated with criminals and cops. Tracy’s sarcastic quips and sardonic asides contrast nicely with the colorful, exaggerated artwork. There’s the introduction of a support team for Tracy, who will no doubt supply kooky gadgets and lots of fun storylines in the future. And that’s the watchword here: fun. Get out and get it, Dick Tracy: Dead or Alive #3 will leave you feeling more alive than dead.

  • Writing
    8
  • Art
    8
  • Coloring
    8
  • User Ratings (0 Votes)
    0

Calling all units – Dick Tracy is wanted for murder!  Framed for the killing of the Police Commissioner, Dick Tracy is a man on the run.  With two hundred grand on his head, can the veteran detective survive a citywide manhunt and catch the real killer?  Find out in Dick Tracy:  Dead or Alive #3!

Dick Tracy: Dead or Alive #3DICK TRACY: DEAD OR ALIVE #3

Story:  Lee and Mike Allred
Pencils:  Rich Tommaso
Ink:  Mike Allred
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Release Date: January 16th, 2019
Price: $3.99

Previously in Dick Tracy: Dead or Alive: Brought in to clear up the city infested in crime, Dick Tracy has few friends but plenty of enemies.  Framed for the murder of the Police Commissioner after some initial successes, Tracy is on the run with a bounty on his head.  With few friends, a massive police dragnet draws tighter.  And with the criminal class after him as well, surely Dick Tracy’s life expectancy is down to hours, if not minutes?

DIRTY RATS!

On the run with the criminals and cops on his tail, Dick Tracy desperately tries to stay alive long enough to find out who has framed him.  Along the way, he plugs a few criminals and finds a bunch of new friends to help him in his search.

The Allreds have crafted a fantastically fun third issue of Dick Tracy:  Dead or Alive.  All the fun and movement and sheer bravura of the opening issues are here, from square-jawed, indomitable Dick Tracy, to a cavalcade of ridiculous characters with fantastic names (Yesterday Knewes, anyone) that fill out the roster.

All the crazy elements from Dick Tracy’s long run are here – exaggerated artwork, larger than life criminals, spectacular gadgets (a quantum rock that resonates with all other similar rocks, allowing long-distance communication, both visual and verbal, is a highlight) and a new group of colorful characters sure to feature in future issues helping Tracy fight crime.

The writing is lean and mean.  Tracy fires off one-liners as easily as he fires his service pistol, plugging criminals (there’s a memorable panel where he shoots a criminal on his tail in the head, the figure silhouetted in black and the hole in the head a red dot) as they close in on him.  There’s a deliciously creepy scene where a heavily bandaged figure gives orders to kill Tracy at any cost, only to be revealed the figure is a barely alive former crime lord under the sway of a crazed scientist.  It’s that sort of bravura writing and plotting that gives Dick Tracy:  Dead or Alive #3 energy to burn, which a lot of other comics sorely need.

The art by Rich Tommaso, which I’ve mentioned earlier, is a standout.  This is comic book art at its finest, with energetic movement captured in larger than life characters, exaggerated features, all within a traditional panel layout.  Until the final page, of course, where Tracy comes across an old flame, dressed in slinky green and more than a match for a square-jawed hero.  As the storytelling is lean, so is the artwork, which makes the story careen across the issue, giving it a breathless quality that draws the reader in until the final page.

As an added bonus, there’s a couple of pages at the end that run through a timeline highlighting some of Dick Tracy’s adventures through the years, including facing off against Nazi interlopers during the war.  It all adds to the atmosphere of the piece.

BOTTOM LINE – TWO FISTED FUN!

There’s plenty of grit hidden within the pages of this book – characters killed, brutal crime lords orchestrating the framing of a good cop, rampant corruption, all under the guise of a colorful romp through a city seemingly populated with criminals and cops.  Tracy’s sarcastic quips and sardonic asides contrast nicely with the colorful, exaggerated artwork.  There’s the introduction of a support team for Tracy, who will no doubt supply kooky gadgets and lots of fun storylines in the future.  And that’s the watchword here:  fun.  Get out and get it, Dick Tracy: Dead or Alive #3 will leave you feeling more alive than dead.


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About Author

Romantic. Raconteur. Kangaroo rustler. Sadly, Rob is none of these. Rob has been a follower of genre since at least the mid-1970s. Book collector, Doctor Who fan, semi-retired podcaster, comic book shop counter jockey, writer (once!) in Doctor Who Magazine and with pretensions to writing fantasy and horror, Rob is the sort of fellow you can happily embrace while wondering why you're doing it. More of his maudlin thoughts can be found at his ill-tended blog https://robertmammone.wordpress.com/

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