2 Guns TPB
Written by Steven Grant
Art by Mat Santolouco
Colors by Popart Studios, Amanda Grazini
Letters by Ed Dukeshire, Marshall Dillon, Terri Delgado
Credit Page Art by Rafael Albuquerque
Cover by Kristian Donaldson
Cover price: $14.99; Available now
I have to admit to a bit of a bias on this, as we here from Geeks of Doom (me specifically) are quoted on the back of the collection for 2 Guns, and it’s the first time that’s ever happened to me, so I would give anything a good review, so long as they quoted me on the book because I am a shallow, shallow man. So, my review of the book can be summed up by that quote shining on the back of the book, “…fun and exciting …This is a great crime story that is worth checking out.” See, my job is done right there. But seriously, I would recommend this book to fans of crime or heist stories or those just looking for a story outside of the superhero mainstream.
Bobby Beans is your standard small-time hood, just looking for his latest score. He’s teamed up with a new partner, Mark Stigman, and they plan to knock off a bank. The only thing is, Bobby is leading a double life, his real name is Bobby Trench, and he’s actually a DEA agent, and he thinks the bank is laundering money for local drug lord. The other big secret is that Mark isn’t who he seems, and the bank isn’t quite what Bobby thinks it is either. The twists keep going from there, with dealers, government spooks, double crosses, and back stabbing.
Writer Steven Grant gives the reader anything they would want out of a crime story, with the requisite gun fights, sex scenes, and salty dialogue. The plot will keep you guessing, but all the deception makes sense in the end. Grant does a good job of keeping all the players straight, which is important in these kinds of stories because if you lose track of who’s playing who, the story can quickly come off the rails. He also does a good job of making the characters likable enough that you care what happens to them.
The art by Mat Santolouco has a nice animated look to it, which is helped by the colorists who keep the art fairly light. You might think with the subject matter, the book would be loaded with dark colors, but with the story being set in the desert, they went with a much brighter color set than other noir stories. As with the script, Santolouco does a good job of making sure the characters are distinctive enough to keep them straight. I like the art in it; it’s nice and clean and tells the story well.
So, it’s already got my stamp of approval, so I won’t go against my own words. This is one that I highly recommend, especially for fans of Ed Brubaker’s Criminal, or for anyone looking for a more realistic story than your standard capes and cowls yarn. It’s just a fun little crime story that’s definitely worth checking out.