Happy Labor Day everyone. By the time you read this, it will either be Labor Day weekend or Labor Day itself. I had the pleasure of encountering some of the best reads I’ve read in comics this year at San Diego ComicCon. This features two historical figures, and what would have happened if they had met, and become friends,
Written by Nicholas Doan
Colors by Jake Bilbao
Lettered by Bobby Timony
Jack the Ripper is on the run. He’s done some bad things and really needs to find a way out of town. He eventually succeeds and ends up in the old west where he meets Billy the Kid. Jack takes a liking, and a bit of envy towards Billy. Billy the Kid shares a lot of similarities to Jack. The biggest two differences are what strike Jack the most. The fact that Billy is incredibly likable, in spite of what he does.
More importantly, it is the fact that Billy is out in the open about what he does, that captivates Jack. The two meet and form a friendship. Billy teaches Jack how to shoot, and for a time, there is peace.
Jack can’t help himself. The urges that drove him out of London drive him to start committing murders here too. In time, Billy catches on to the carnage, and the two friends now have to face each other.
Nicholas Doan has a very fascinating narrative here. I enjoyed the pairing of Jack and Billy the Kid. It’s a crossover I’m shocked I’ve never read before, but also, one that’s very intriguing. The idea of these two being a pair of friends is a novel idea, not just a comic one. I love how Doan characterized these two very famous characters. Jack the Ripper has had many interpretations throughout literature, and his being envious of another man’s ability to be free in who they are struck me as a very human quality. It’s easy to make Jack just a monster. I enjoy the interpretation of Jack.
I also enjoyed Billy the Kid. Doan’s Billy is a rascal and a scoundrel, but unlike Jack, there’s still a little bit of human decency inside him. Billy isn’t exactly a hero or an anti-hero in this story. He’s more the protagonist, as his charisma and honesty makes the audience naturally want to gravitate to him.
Jake Bilbao’s illustrations fit this story perfectly. His ability to make Jack the Ripper a creepy, yet envious monster meshed with Billy the Kid’s Wild West perfectly. The people, and backgrounds all fit the world and the story told. There’s a dirty, fun, and haunting quality to the story.
This book is a fun story about two villains finding kinship. It’s a fun pulpy read. I can’t recommend it enough.
I’ve been busier than a bandit the last few weeks. My podcast has crossed 1000 episodes. The Twitch era of the show is coming to an end and I’m working towards doing more shows on the road. I got some interview footage from SDCC coming soon, as the travel show will be a success. I’m looking forward to doing more shows on the road.
Speaking of, you can support the show on my patreon right now. I’ll have a new episode up on Tuesday, and I already have my first audio-only interview up there with Brianna Winner from San Diego. More is coming soon.
Speaking of the show, Healing Hands, a massage therapy show hosted by Shelniel Bostic, is set to debut in a couple of weeks. You can subscribe to the Youtube channel right now. Content is debuting on the show next week. It’s my writing and directing debut. I hope you guys check it out.
And one more milestone to mention is this column. This marks my 75th column with First Comics News. I want to thank Rik for being gracious enough to let me on the show.
I got a novel to finish by Tuesday. My time at When Words Collide created a cool opportunity for me to follow through on. I’ll hopefully have more details on that soon. In the meantime, I’m open for commissions, or if you need any commercial work, check me out.
I think that’s everything. Next review, I review my favorite comic of the year so far.
Stay inspired out there.