The Goon #1 – Eric Powell & Rachael Cohen (Albatross Funnybooks)

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The Goon, Franky and Roscoe have returned to the world and while they’re slightly older, they’re no wiser than they ever were, and with the clock being wound back to the beginning for this new series, it’s oddly fitting that the trio find themselves back in the place where it all began. On the cold, hard streets of the Town With No Name.  Things aren’t quite the same as they were when they left though, and the town that they left evil priest and zombie free is now under the control of warring gangs, all of whom are vying for control of the Town With No Name and count various monsters and the undead among their ranks and none of whom are particularly happy that the wayward sons, the Goon and Franky, are back.  Inevitably, that displeasure makes itself known and before they’ve been back long enough to find a place to live, and while they’re hunting for a curse free home, Franky and the Goon find themselves going toe to toe with the biggest, baddest ghoul in town and getting stuck in the middle of turf war between the dead and the not-so dead.

Eric Powell’s Goon hasn’t missed a step or lost a beat during his brief hiatus, and by bringing Goon and Franky home, Powell ensures that he hits the ground running in the first panel and doesn’t pause for breath until the last moment that ends this first issue with a humdinger of a cliff-hanger and the promise of further mayhem and mystery. It’s business as usual for The Goon, as Powell’s pulp noir art collides with his quirky, offbeat and deliciously dark humour that’s given an extra kick in the pants and spring in its step by Rachael Cohen’s sublime faded colours that help to provide the Town With No Name and all of its strange inhabitants with a weird and wonderful individuality and identity. Absence may well make the heart grow fonder, but trust me, nothing has changed. The Goon is still one of the most original and inventive comics on the shelves and delivers more bang for your buck in a couple of pages than most books do in their entire lifetime. Welcome back Goon… Tim Cundle

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