COMIC BOOK REVIEW: KINSKI / WRITER: GABRIEL HARDMAN / ARTIST: GABRIEL HARDMAN / PUBLISHER: IMAGE COMICS / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW
Written and drawn by prolific writer, artist and storyboarder Gabriel Hardman, Kinski proves Image are continuing to push the envelope and challenge the medium and its readers. While it’s easy to get sniffy when a dog’s concerned, Marley and Me this isn’t.
Part dedicated to the real life Kinski, the book follows the almost impossible adventure of traveling salesman Joe, whose shortcomings and failings are soon wrapped up in the fate of a dog he lovingly names after German actor Klaus Kinski. Representing his place in the universe, and subsequently his redemption, the story is like a wacky Coen Brothers crime thriller.
The gorgeous black and white artwork is all moody shades and white space, a throwback to the pulpy strips of the ‘40s and ‘50s. The simple layouts are revitalising in their starkness; just honest storytelling and confident art.
The sixth issue is the most potent, set ahead by six months, before jumping forward another six, it’s an emotionally charged conclusion to a series about love and all the ugly parts of it too.
Given the emotional lives of its central characters are all tied up in the dog, it’s an engaging read but never demanding. Full of genuine laughs and moving interactions, Kinski will quickly be up there with Blankets, Ghost World and Maus for must-read non-superhero graphic novels.
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