Comics: 39 Minutes

Title: 39 Minutes
Writer: William Harms
Penciler: Jerry Lando
Inker: Jay Leisten
Colors: Brian Buccellato
Letters: Troy Peteri
Reviewed by Johnny Destructo

Having recently watched The Rock, Jail Break Season 1, A-Team and The Losers, I can definitely say I’ve seen this type of story before. Military men wrongfully put away in prison to rot by corporate or political fat-cats. It doesn’t seem to be getting boring though! There’s something about watching a convict get a chance to do right, while hopefully taking down the people who put him there to begin with that just blows my skirt up. This is almost exactly the background plot to The Rock (which is still an awesome movie, btw), but our Sean Connery is a man named John Clayton, an ex-marine that looks suspiciously like Jesus. A coming plot twist, methinks. His job is to track and bring down a team of politically connected “contractors” who have taken to robbing the shit out of small towns. It’s a joy to watch them do their thing with precision and calculated ruthlessness.

Here’s the what-what on the art front. I didn’t realize that the penciler was as strong as he is until I saw his sketches at the end. The work was really strong and realistic with a hint of stylization that made me take a closer look. Sadly, the actual story art was inconsistant and pretty weak at times. I’m wondering if maybe the inker isn’t an appropriate match for this art. Or maybe the penciler just took more time with his sketches then the actual panel-work. Either way, I’m interested to see where this is headed, provided it makes it to issue #2.

This first part of the story is a contender up for review in Top Cow’s PILOT SEASON, a sales-based voting system wherein the #1 with the most copies sold gets to continue their story. I think this is a pretty cool idea, but the problem for me is that sometimes I need a second issue before I can give a series the yay/nay. I’m still on the fence for this one, especially since there are other contenders to read before making up my mind. The problem here is that all of the stories I listed above have some charm, some wit..and most of all..fun. This is a straight-up, bad-ass heist story. For my taste, it needs a bit more spark, but it’s still a solid first ish.

When not hosting the PopTards Podcast, fist-bumping his nethers, discussing movies, comics and other flimflam here, JD is graphically designing/illustrating/inking for a living, hanging with the @$$holes over at www.aintitcoolnews.com and Booking his Face off over here.

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