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The Losers #1 & #2

Posted: Monday, August 4, 2003
By: Tim Hartnett



Writer: Andy Diggle
Artist: Jock

Publisher: DC/Vertigo

The Losers does what a lot of comics have done recently---create a feel similar to the Lethal Weapon movies. While reading the first two issues of this series by Andy Diggle and newcomer, Jock, I was screaming for an appearance by Joe Pesci. Guess I should stick with the flicks…

The Losers is the story of ex-CIA agents who are trying to expose the practices of the organization which sells drugs to get funds. At first, the objective of this team is to get America to see what happened to them, but later, the notion of allowing the public to see the procedures of the CIA becomes more important. They are skilled fighters, with every possible action-movie discipline among them---the tech guy, the badass, the babe, the tough one, the joker, etc. Their operations in this issue involve hijacking a Medivac chopper, heisting money from a CIA truck on a suspension bridge, and attempting to remove the CEO of a related organization's hard drive to gain passwords.

I purchased this comic mainly because I was expecting something clever and new, as well as the favorable consensus. It's certainly fun and bloody, but it doesn't really offer anything new. At times, Mr. Diggle's attempts to be stylish and unique detract from the matter at hand, and leave certain events dragged out longer than they should. For instance, the first issue has a time between the arrival of the Medivac helicopter and the team destroying a truck. Mr. Diggle uses this frame to establish the objectives of the Losers, even though he does it many more times in that particular issue, and quite a few in the next. It's aspects of the book like these which leaves the underlying plot bland and repetitive; Mr. Diggle should dedicate more time to action (the selling point of the book), than an attempt at characterization and deep meaning. It just doesn't work here.

The real turn-off for me, however, was the artwork. Mr. Jock's characters all tend to look alike, and the uninventive coloring doesn't make things any better. What more, the newcomer does not pay enough attention to detail to make the action points in the book entertaining. I found the bridge sequence in the first issue to be especially convoluted; the action and characters did not flow well with the dialogue. The excessively sour and gritty style also degrades things, but then again, I realize the appeal of that to some.

While the book is a far cry from a worthwhile thriller, the action scenes are quite unrestrained, even if they are not very innovative. The only readers who will return to this book are those who enjoy mediocre drawing and poorly-lit action sequences told with some mildly exciting words. There's enough books out there that already do that, though. For less than $2.95.



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