Justin Jordan's six issue Image series isn't exactly for the faint of heart. It has gallons of blood and gore in its over the top action and more swearing than a man who just stubbed his toe. If that isn't your cup of tea, then feel free to stop reading right now. But, if you're seeking for something that essentially feels like Kick-Ass, Spider-Man and The Raid: Redemption on steroids, then stick around and let me tell you why you must read THE STRANGE TALENT OF LUTHER STRODE.
Sure, Luther Strode's first volume is packed with absurdly graphic violence and a constant stream of four letter words, but as Jordan says in the TPB's introduction, the book is all about power. Let's be honest, we've all had to deal with people we weren't so fond of in school and I'm sure we all had different fantasies about how to put them in their place. And, even if you don't want to admit it, we've all dreamed of what it would be like to be superhuman. Be it flight, strength or any other power, the thought of one day waking up and having one of these grand abilities is more exciting than being a kid on Christmas morning. This book fulfills that fantasy for one kid (Luther, of course) and from there it's a phenomenal adventure as he tries to discover the best way to use his newfound abilities.
Yes, this is a story we've seen plenty of times before (like I said above, Spider-Man and Kick-Ass are the most obvious comparisons). I mean, how many times have we seen the rookie hero realize they can use their powers to humiliate a bully? Plenty, of course, but despite that it's still a cheer-worthy moment. Jordan excels in making the fairly familiar story feel fresh and fills it with a likable cast of characters. The overall narrative with the villain is a little shallow, but this tale is all about the journey and this one absolutely delivers. You'll be treated to countless laughs and way more than a few moments that'll make your jaw hit the floor.
Then there's ridiculously animated and visceral artwork by artist Tradd Moore and colorist Felipe Sobreiro. This is a book that primarily thrives on insanely powerful and downright absurd action, and these two nail it flawlessly. Every punch, every shot, every horrific kill -- they're talentedly brought to life and you'll feel 'em all. Trust me when I say there's quite a few scenes that'll leave you completely stunned. When it comes to over the top action, this book is among the best.
If you do happen to fall in love with the title, you'll be thrilled to know Jordan and Moore's second volume is currently underway (THE LEGEND OF LUTHER STRODE). We're now four issues in and it has yet to disappoint. Everything I love about the first is on display here at full force and, even though I thought it was impossible, the fights reach insane new heights. The battle with Jack the Ripper alone makes it worth reading.
THE STRANGE TALENT OF LUTHER STRODE is awesomely gruesome, hilariously vulgar, and most of all, a total blast from the shocking opening scene to the grin-inducing final moments. Jordan's down-to-earth script and Moore & Sobreiro's beautiful yet cruel visuals makes this six issue series an outrageously good time that I highly recommend checking out.