When her niece, who has been missing for almost a year, shows up on her doorstep, Carol Hogarth finds out that people can be poison… especially if that person is named Virginia Applejack. Best friends, worst enemies, an artificial leg, and a bottle of rum all combine in this tale of Stray Bullets: Killers.
While similar in tone and atmosphere to last month’s issue #1, David Lapham’s Stray Bullets: Killers #2 tackles a whole new range of taboo subjects. Issue #1 smashed together the contradicting viewpoints of an innocent adolescent and the corrupt underworld to provide a story that took a view on the loss of innocence and bleak world of criminality in today’s society. This month’s issue takes a look at family life in the modern day, analysing again the corruption of youth but also touching on subjects such as over-medication, mental illness and the roles and responsibility of family.
Lapham’s slow-burning writing style is again key to the success of the entire issue, slowly but deliberately unravelling a story to see the very real truth of what lies behind the closed doors of our everyday suburbia. Lapham’s writing skills are jarring in today’s comic book environment where almost every title writes in a six-issue story-arc format. Lapham manages to create a complex, bleak, honest and in many ways terrifying tale in one issue.
Unlike issue #1, this month’s tale has a distinct lack of seedy characters. There are no gun-toting gangster types terrorising a good neighbourhood… just the family next door. In many ways, this reality based disaster leaves you feeling even bleaker. Fantastic stuff.
The writer of this piece was: Blair Stevenson
You can also find Blair on Twitter.