Gotham City Dossiers: Icon Comics

Icon Comics is one of those publishers that operate under a much larger umbrella. In this case, the umbrella is Marvel. The imprint was launched for the purpose of publishing creator-owned titles in 2004 and has to this day continued to be a successful offshoot of the bigger Marvel brand. The first comic published by Icon Comics (and the reason for its inception) was Powers by Michael Avon Oeming and Brian Michael Bendis. You're probably pretty familiar with Powers, but if not let me fill you in. The story follows two detectives, Christian Walker and Deena Pilgrim, who work in a department investigating cases involving "powers," which is antoher way to describe people with superpowers.police officers in a Homicide department devoted to cases that involve "powers" (people with superpowers). Walker used to be a superhero so he has inside info he regularly taps into, and Pilgrim secretly has superpowers that caused her to kill her boyfriend in self-defense. Criminal features the gritty writing talents of Ed Brubaker and art by Sean Phillips and looks at two characters, Tommy Patterson and his partner Ivan. When Tommy was arrested for killing Teeg Lawless, Ivan took care of Tommy's son Leo and made sure that the pickpocket trade that Tommy taught to Leo was used intelligently to keep him out of jail and alive. Teeg's kids were arrested at the same time, and while Ricky was sent to juvenile detention Tracy joing the Army and became a badass soldier. Kick-Ass is written by Mark Millar (with illustrations by John Romita, Jr.) and follows Dave Lizewski, an average high school kid with a single father and an avid interest in comic books. He takes this interest and goes past the towel and safety pin costume to a full-out superhero costume that he wears under his clothes. After a few nights of practicing walking on roofs he hits the town to fight crime but gets his ass kicked, sending him to the hospital. But that beating is not enough to stop him, and after intense physical rehab he gets back out to fight crime, only this time his exploits are caught on camera and uploaded to YouTube (yes, YouTube has infiltrated comics) unofficially naming him "Kick-Ass." If you notice a theme here with the books you're not crazy: they tend towards the criminal noir type. But that's perfectly fine with me. When you've got writers like Bendis, Brubaker and Millar writing this stuff you know that the stories are going to be tight and well constructed. And the crime aspect of the stories keep them somewhat fresh. Icon Comics