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Damaged is a “very solid read”

Reviews by Brett Schenker

It’s been quite a while since I’ve read a comic from Radical Comics. Luckily they did a bit of outreach and checked in and in my hands were the first two issues of Damaged. I’d checked out the comic on the shelf at my local shop and for whatever reason didn’t grab it, but here was the opportunity to read something that should be up my way. Created by, Michael Schwarz and Jonathan Schwarz, executive produced by Sam Worthington, written by David Lapham with pencils by Leonardo Manco, the comic reminded me of a Radical comic I loved, The Last Days of American Crime.

After a violent incident in their shared past forces the lives of brothers Frank and Henry Lincoln to diverge, each carries on with his own brand of justice. Frank, who is very close to retirement, has spent his life becoming a distinguished member of the San Francisco police force. Meanwhile, Henry has devoted his life to being a vigilante whose own brand of justice is far more violent than the law allows. After 35 years, these brothers are brought together again by the murder of a Russian mafia boss in the city by the bay. Frank, caught between political turmoil and training his replacement as he leaves the force, comes face to face with Henry, who may have more than just answers about the murder.

Take The Last Days of American Crime and mix it with the Punisher and you might get pretty close to the series. That’s a good thing I think. But how did it all measure up? Find out below.

Damaged #1
The comic kicks it off, taking you right into the vigilante justice. I really had it in the back of my mind it’s their version of the Punisher. Again, not a bad thing if done right. And they have. We’re introduced to a bunch of slimy politicians (I can spot them, I work in politics) and what seems like a pretty clean cop who they want to replace the old grizzled veteran. A nice twist to the vigilante comic, while not original it still added a layer to the story telling as opposed to the simple “catch the bad guy.” There’s a lot of twists, some mobsters get killed, there’s a story of another cop who took justice in his hands, it all adds up for the positive.

The art helps the case with some great work that doesn’t fall into Radical’s habits of lots of blacks (no idea why but it’s something I’ve noticed with their comics while reading digitally). The art is solid with similar work to some books I can’t quite place. Maybe a little Tim Bradstreet? It’s good, really good.

What easily could have been a stereotypical vigilante comic and the cop trying to stop him, got me to not only want to come back for the second issue, but happy Radical reached out.

Story: 8 Art: 8 Overall: 8 Recommendation: Buy

Damaged 2Damaged #2
So, there’s a lot of good stuff here that continues and adds to that first issue. We get a better sense of the problems between the two main characters and their falling out. We have the old grizzled cop trying to bring in the young upstart and give him advice. You also get a lot on Henry and his motivations and some of his plan.

There’s a nice contrast here. The older cop dealing with the younger cop who wants his job. The old vigilante who is looking for someone to take over. The two story lines will play off each other nicely.

The art is solid as expected with some great detail here. It’s really solid work that gets me to really linger on the art as I flip through the pages.

Two issue in, and I can’t wait to read the third. Very solid read with some great art too.

Story: 8 Art: 8 Overall: 8 Recommendation: Buy

Click the images above to learn more about Damaged or click here to go to this article at Graphic Policy.

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