A comic review article by: Jamil Scalese
Bar Office Space and Breaking Bad, money laundering is an oft forgotten aspect of major financial crime. Scarface had like one scene (in a montage, mind you) dedicated to his cover story. Yeah, it’s awesome when you sell all your cocaine to triple your profit overnight, but how the hell are you going to spend all that without raising the eyebrows of friends, neighbors and the government?

That’s where Jeff Sinclair comes in. Jeff is the best money rinse guy in the grand city of San Francisco. Everyone from mob bosses to small time crooks request his services for their own. Jeff is a slick, though levelheaded, guy who appears focused only on making as much money and the score of the baseball game. He lives in a fast, dangerous world that requires equal parts grit and ingenuity to stay one step ahead of the technology and people that make his job so difficult. Established creator Gary Phillips (Angeltown, Highrollers) does an excellent job of quickly establishing the setting and tone of Jeff’s world and getting us into some of the juicer aspects of the plot. Admittedly, in this debut issue Jeff Sinclair is like a stone skipping along the service of the narrative pond. We only get the information we need to get the meat of the story, but for the purposes of drawing in the reader it was appropriate.

Near the middle of this issue a former employee of a Las Vegas casino approaches Jeff and requests his services as he recently made off with millions of dollars belonging to his previous employer. The problem is that employer is Steve Maxon, the biggest wig that you could possibly find in America’s playground; someone you don’t mess with. Presented with the choice to abstain from greed or give in to the green-eyed bastard to pursue what could be a hefty payday our hero picks the more exciting route, and we reap the benefits.

A couple factors make this straightforward concept a success. First, implications of a deeper plot, like the mild notoriety of the main character and numerous secondary characters, give the reader incentive to buy the next issue. Second, the art is top tier, as you’d expect with such a lofty ranking from yours truly.

Not only Marc Laming, but the whole team put a phenomenal, beautiful comic on the stands this week. Though The Rinse is told in modern times there is a ubiquitous old-timey feel that reeks upper-class crime. Lamings pencils are simple, yet defined, and feature exquisite fundamentals. Moore’s earthy and bronzed colors give the comic a “washed out” feel that feeds back to the title and subject matter. I even have to give letterer Steve Wands a shout-out for giving Jeff’s captions some pop.

I didn’t even mention that this comic is a dollar, did I? Well this comic is a dollar, and that makes it a viable candidate for your comic stack this week. The Rinse is a crime comic that took a great first step, and I’ll be there for the next one.

Jamil Scalese is just like you -- an avid comics fan and lover of sequential art. Residing in Pittsburgh, PA, he is an unapologetic Deadpool fan, lover of the Food Network and proud member of Steelers Nation.

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