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King City

Brandon Graham
Art: Brandon Graham

Reviewed by Lorenzo Princi
King City by Brandon Graham
Cover Concept by Lorenzo Princi, 14 May 2013

Cat Master Joe does the sort of work that can get you into trouble and his latest “Cat” Burglary leads him into an underground war he’d like to avoid. Though Joe’s escapades are the main plot thread, he almost becomes a tour guide, as the secondary stories which feature his best friend’s redemption and his ex-lover are very much where all the heart lies.

The richest character in the comic however is King City itself, with it’s Japanese/Korean street culture influences blended with an urban mid 90s “teen spirit” grunge styling. Though not spelt out, King City is a used metropolis set in some future or alternative reality filled with vending machines, fictional pop culture references and it’s own rich history and socio political issues. A sprawl of weird and wonderful people, classes, aliens (or perhaps mutants) and Ninjas!

Brandon Graham's tale is unique in that it is able to mix fantastical and whimsical science fiction ideas with very grounded and urban cultural tones. King City is a brilliant showcase of what the comic strip genre can convey with some simple line work and a bit of dialogue. King City very much falls in the indie comic area and perhaps suited to those who enjoy Chris Ware over Chris Claremont.

Tags: Image Comics