After an already impressive opening issue of the Awesome Comics Anthology from Dan Butcher, Tony Esmond & Vince Hunt there was never any doubt that I’d be sticking with the rest of the series and as we edge closer to the fourth being released it was time to delve back into the most recent issues.
While the first issue set the tone for each of the three stories I was keen to see just how they would progress…..
Murder Road by Vince Hunt and Daniel Marc Chant
While the Steven King vibe kicked in from the start, Vince & Daniel managed to tiptoe around any overbearing horror clichés and have instead delivered a fully charged slasher epic. The kids-in-trouble element is handled with care as the faceless figure behind the wheel keeps his focus on upping the body-count as the deeper involvement of local police Detective Beth helps add the extra layer that elevates this to another level.
Cockney Kung Fu by Tony Esmond and Nick Prolix
The Tony/Nick balance in the second story of the collection begins to reap it’s rewards in these next instalments as the next “Big Job” that Red has her hand in. The job itself seems to bring every scumbag out of the woodwork and while Red seems to somehow fit into the mix, there’s a double-cross around the corner that means the finale can’t come quick enough. Great cast from Tony and the style from Nick hits those plot points with an effortless panache. Still slick as Fuck!!!
Vyper by Dan Butcher
The one-man powerhouse that is Dan Butcher keeps this testosterone-crammed gem trucking along with the type of laugh-out loud moments that had me punching the air with some of the lines being delivered & the action unravelling across the pages. The secret life split between Vyper & his alter-ego as his macho exterior begins to mellow to his female partner. It doesn’t mellow too much though as the next big drug deal brings the past & present smashing together in the big budget style that Dan can pour into a comic and slap you in the face with.
A solid anthology lives or dies based on its weakest story but this trilogy breaks that mold by hitting the heights with all three of them. Hard enough to keep a single story consistent but pulling it off with all three is a testament to how well-suited these three small press heroes really are. This anthology earns that Awesome name and then some and I can’t wait to get my hands on issue #4. All hail the Awesome Podcast crew!!!
You can also keep updated with each of the creators over on their Twitter pages too:
Dan – @VanguardComic
Tony – @Ezohyez
Vince – @jesterdiablo
The fourth issue will be released at this Saturday’s True Believers Comic Festival where you can get all four AND meet the gang……go get em!