Comic: "Loveless: A Kin Of Homecoming"
Published by: DC Comics
Written by: Brian Azzarello
Artist: Marcelo Frusin
Plot: Wes Cutter returns to Blackwater after having been thought killed in the Civil War, and quickly becomes sheriff in his Union-occupied home town.
Review: As a big fan of Azzarello's 100 Bullets as well as the Western genre, I really wanted to like Loveless, because I'm convinced that somewhere inside there lies a good book. Unfortunately, the artwork is so damned confusing that I can't follow what's going on, and because of that I find it impossible to enjoy the story.
Fan's of Azzarello's other work will recognize his trademark gritty storytelling here, as well as his snarky, clever dialog that often carries multiple interpretations. Most of the characters are complete bastards, which is another regular Azzarello trait.
Frusin's artwork isn't bad by any means, but his style is definitely not the best suited for this kind of book. Here's the main problem. Most of the characters are white guys with long hair, beards, and hats that shade much of their faces. Frusin's style tends to be dark and shadowy anyway, and as the series progresses it gets muddier and muddier (MUCH more than you see in these pictures), which makes it nearly impossible to tell which character is which. I had to reread scenes over and over again in an attempt to try to understand what the hell is going on, to no avail.
To make matters even worse, Azzarello tells this story out of chronological order, frequently jumping back and forth in time to reveal details about the characters, but Frusin doesn't give any sort of visual cues that a time jump has taken place. Nothing blatantly obvious is required, but something subtle like a slightly different panel border would be nice.
So not only did I find myself requently confused as to WHO was doing or saying WHAT, but I didn't even know what time period the events I was looking at were occurring. I stuck with the book for fifteen issues because of my faith in Azzarello and my love for the Western genre, hoping that eventually things would start to make some kind of sense, but I finally had to give up out of sheer frustration.
Perhaps you'll have better luck at interpreting the art than I, but I can't honestly recommend this book to anyone, which is a shame because it should've been really good.
(Scored on a 0.5 - 5 pickles rating: 0.5 being the worst and 5 being the best)
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