Publisher: Image Comics
Writer: Nick Spencer
Artist: Steve Lieber
Release Date: 6th April 2016
“Being a criminal these days. It’s shit.’’ These are the opening words to the noir-drenched The Fix, a brand new hard-boiled crime tale from Eisner Award nominees Nick Spencer and Steve Lieber – a story of mobsters, dirty cops and seedy politicians in Los Angeles. If that creative combo alone hasn’t already sold you, the comic itself sure as hell should, because it’s good; it’s really freaking good actually, containing all the style and pizazz of classic crime noir updated for the digital era.
With references to Silk Road and online hacking, The Fix is a story about trying to break free from the shackles of being an afterthought due to the recent ‘evolution’ of criminal activity. With so many genius minds able to make billions through avenues such as the dark web, it would seem the streets and old school crime just ain’t as prosperous as it used to be. However, that doesn’t stop the characters in The Fix from doing whatever is necessary in order to make a quick buck.
The story revolves around Mac and Roy – two police officers operating with their own code of ethics and personal gain, even if that comes at the law’s expense. They have ties to organised criminals and celebrities, and every single character they encounter is a complete narcissist. This isn’t a story with clear-cut good and bad guys; everyone is rotten to the core, but in an extremely fun way. One of the central plot devices involves a sex toy, which typifies the seedy, darkly comedic world these characters inhabit.
This is a must read for crime fans, but the beauty of it is that it reminds you that reading is a joy. The dialogue is some of the best you’re ever likely to read, and it’s somewhat reminiscent of the films of Shane Black and early Quentin Tarantino in that sense. Fans of either are bound to have fun with The Fix, as it fully embodies the style of those films. The bad guys are very humanised – and somewhat glamorised as a result of being so well-written to the point they’re actually likeable. If you can’t abandon your morals temporarily and appreciate characters that are so good at being bad, then this is probably not for you.
Overall, this is yet another winner from this fantastic duo and an essential read for fans of crime fiction. It looks set to the best one in quite some time.
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The writer of this piece was: Kieran Fisher
Kieran Tweets from @HairEverywhere_