Posted: Wednesday, June 19, 2002
By: Darren Schroeder

Cover of Shade Creator(s): Floyd Choat (artwork, story pp1-10) & Johnny Gonzales (story, layout pp11-33)
Publishers: Self Published
From: USA
Price: $2:00 (US) ppd or trade

A comic that follows the adventures of a bounty hunter as he skirts the dangers of the underworld mobs and their knuckles, knives and bullets. As straight action with a dash of pulp crime added in this is more than an acceptable read. The dialogue has some especially amusing turns of phrase, such as one day the teflon covering his ass will turn to velcro.

It of course runs the risk of being a carbon copy of any number of vigilante comic stories such as the Punisher. Perhaps in a strategy to avoid this Johnny starts playing lose with the genre as he throws in a couple of characters called Floyd and Gonzo. They're comic creators who have deadlines to meet, but are willing to give Shade a lift when he needs one.

The light-hearted touch of these two guys going into the mob nightclub and bumming free drinks in exchange for sketches of the patrons is cleverly inserted into the storyline without derailing the flow of events. As for artwork, both Floyd and Johnny provide us with tidy and attractive pages, with maximum use being made of parallel lines to give the scenes a detailed and dynamic look.

In a Word: Quirky.

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