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KISS #1 - Dressed to Kill, Part 1 Review

3

The avatars of the Elders have returned to Earth, during the prohibition era.

If there's a comic book out featuring KISS, you know I'm going to review it. Archie Meets KISS was a super-fun hit, and now, it's IDW's turn to take the Demon, Starchild, the Cat, and the Spaceman and put them into the world of 1920s Chicago.

The Good

Out of anything else I've ever reviewed for ComicVine, this one was the toughest for me.

Wonderful art by Jamal Igle. From page one, your sucked into this book from the great amount of detail that Jamal puts into each panel. He does a great job as keeping panel composition fresh on each page and taking different angles on each character. It flows very well from start to finish and meshes well with the writing and story.

The dialogue writing and pacing by Chris Rydall is top notch. Although I didn't like the overall story, the dialogue felt natural, quick witted, and straight to the point. He and Jamal do a wonderful job on this issue thus far and they're talent is wonderful on this book, even if I'm down the middle on it.

If this comic didn't feature the mythos of KISS, I may have liked it a lot more. It is an intriguing story, one I'll continue reading as the series progresses. There's some cool elements of science fiction and mysticism here. It can only get weirder/more awesome from here.

The Bad

First thing that caught my eye was the lyrics to the song "She" (by KISS, obviously) starting at the top of page two. This refers to the character "She," who has her accomplice Lester, which we meet right away. It seemed like a pointless endeavor to me.

This book takes tons of ideas I love, Chicago, the 1920s, KISS, science-fiction/fantasy in American history, and a wonderful creative team, and it puts it into a comic book that overall is "ok" at best. It's incredibly disappoint. I really want to like this book, but all-in-all, it just doesn't work for me on the page, and after yet another read through, I think it's because KISS is in it.

KISS is once again trying to legitimize their mythos into the comic book world. I feel like anytime we get a comic featuring KISS (minus the recent Archie run) their mythos is becomes a bit overwhelming and frankly, I don't think it works on the page, which is a huge bummer since I really enjoy the creative team. However, that being said, I will continue reading this.

The Verdict

Oh boy. This one was a tough one for me. I'm a KISS fan, but I just didn't like KISS in this comic. I like the concepts and ideas, but seeing the band didn't feel right. There's an incredible amount of creative talent on this book from Igle and Rydall.

Overall, I'm down the middle on this book.

6 Comments
Posted by doordoor123

You should see Gene Simmons' MPR interview. I think it WAS the reporter's fault, but Gene came off as one of the most arrogant, ignorant people in the world. For that reason, I didn't support this book.

Posted by Katie24

@doordoor123 said:

You should see Gene Simmons' MPR interview. I think it WAS the reporter's fault, but Gene came off as one of the most arrogant, ignorant people in the world. For that reason, I didn't support this book.

As a collector of old Rolling Stone magazines, I've read a lot of Simmons interviews and he pretty much always comes off that way. He is a good business man and knows how to market himself and his band, but the dude will do ANYTHING for a buck.

Posted by Outside_85

@doordoor123: @Katie24: Saw an interview with the, now late, Ronni James Dio once where he poked some fun at Gene and their feud over who invented the devil horns sign. According to Ronnie, Gene also invented shoes, air and breathing :)

Posted by Katie24

@Outside_85 said:

@doordoor123: @Katie24: Saw an interview with the, now late, Ronni James Dio once where he poked some fun at Gene and their feud over who invented the devil horns sign. According to Ronnie, Gene also invented shoes, air and breathing :)

Dio says he got the devil horn sign from his grandmother who a eastern European Jew. She would do that sign as a way to ward off bad spirits or something and as a kid it scarred the crap out of him, so he started to do it at concerts. Simmons is also also an eastern European Jew so maybe he saw this growing up to. Maybe they both deserve a little credit, who knows. But personally I give Dio the credit for it. Dio rocks, his music makes me want to play D&D, my level 12 halfling rogue would kick Gene Simmons ass!

Posted by Outside_85

@Katie24: Hmm not sure if Ronnie's granny was from Eastern Europe, the sign he said he saw her use is specifically mentioned as an Italian variety (I am guessing she was catholic since I remember him mentioning nuns too) of warding off the Evil Eye of others or using the same gesture to give the Evil Eye (which is kinda like the modern day middle finger for us :) )

Anyways I found the vid here:

Posted by Katie24

Ah, I stand corrected. I just vaguely remembered hearing something about it on MTV or VH1 or something. Man, I forgot how short Dio is, lol.