Bedlam #1

by lucstclair on October 28, 2012

From the mind of Nick Spencer comes the story of what makes a super villain tick, what drives them and can they truly be rehabilitated. Madder Red is the most notorious criminal mastermind the city of bedlam has ever faced, he kills woman & children at the drop of hat, likes to play games with the authorities and loves a grand audience. After pulling off his opus of all crime sprees, he’s finally captured and his reign of terror is finally over… or is it? With the entire city watching, Madder Red has one final request. Kill him or watch six bombs go off, killing children in various schools all over the city. The authorities have 1 hour to comply.

The Team

Written by Nick Spencer (Morning Glories, Shuddertown HC, Fear Itself : Secret Avengers), illustrated by Riley Rossmo (Wild Children GN, Green Wake Vol. 1, Rebel Blood), coloured by Jean-Paul Csuka. Cover by Frazer Irving (Fort : Prophet of the Unexplained!). Published by Image Comics.

The Pros & Cons

This is a different and captivating take on a the good vs. evil comic book, the story focuses on the villain and the horrible acts he inflicts on the citizens of Bedlam, a kind of city not unlike DC’s Gotham City and like Gotham City, Bedlam has its own Joker-like psychotic villain, a twisted maniacal, smiley faced, mask wearing degenerate called Madder Red. The city’s “Batman” is a costumed champion is called The First, but not much is centered on him.


Writer Nick Spencer has produced a fascinating journey into the psyche of a deranged killer, a story driven by violence, innocent blood spilled, fanatics, cover ups & scapegoats. Illustrator Riley Rossmo’s mesmerizing drawings will haunt you, with the assistance of colourist Jean-Paul Csuka, some of the black & red pages strikes the right mood for havoc & despair. The weakest part of this comic is the cover, which compared to its variant covers, is kind of bland.

The Outcome

Glorifying bad guys has been done before, but with the right script & originality, a new villain like Madder Red emerges to offer something fresh & new. This was a remarkable & unexpected comic, I can’t recommend this one enough. And finally, to summarize Madder Red, I’d like to quote Tony Montana by saying “Say hello to the (new) bad guy!”

Our Score:


A Look Inside