Dying is Easy #1 Review

by Nathan Koffler on December 11, 2019

Creators: Joe Hill and Martin Simmonds
Writer: Joe Hill
Artist: Martin Simmonds
Colorist: Dee Cunniffe
Letterer: Shawn Lee
Publisher: IDW

Dying is Easy #1 is a wonderful start to a brand new series by writer Joe Hill and artist Martin Simmonds. The issue begins with Syd “Shit-Talk” Homes doing his stand up routine, which is both morbid and hilarious. During his set, we learn that Syd is a former homicide detective and a little bit after his set, we learn that there has also been some controversy regarding how he handled a case which resulted in a suicide. This setup is perfect and manages to give us a lot of information in a few pages in a really creative way. 

If we weren’t hooked by the dialogue in the opening scene, Syd has several conversations with people around the bar as in any classic whodunnit. This both introduces us to the other future suspects and entertains us with more excellent dialogue written by Joe Hill. Ultimately, we now know pretty much everyone wants something bad done to the joke stealing comedian Carl Dixon.

It had been a couple of weeks between when I read about this series on Twitter and when I actually read the issue. I had pretty much completely forgot what the issue was supposed to be about besides that it was about comedians, that it was written by Joe Hill, and that it was illustrated by Martin Simmonds. When I read it, I was so engaged and was absolutely loving it and had just thought it was an interesting series about comedians, especially Syd. I was completely on board with it if that was the case because the writing is so incredible that I didn't feel the need for anything more. The end scene then obviously kind of shocked me and reminded me that the series is about comedians and Syd in particular, but it’s also a murder mystery. 

Dying is Easy is a great way to enjoy a crime story without it feeling too monotonous. One of the most exciting things about Dying is Easy is how it does have the characteristics of a murder mystery while also providing a newer and fresher means of experiencing it. 

The story is dark and grimy and Martin Simmonds and Dee Cunniffe’s artwork portrays that very nicely. The illustrations are detailed, yet it always seems we can’t really see what we’re looking at. The colors help the illustrations further feel shadowy and mysterious. Even the issue’s single action scene is simple yet very brutal. 

Joe Hill and Martin Simmonds have created something really great with Dying is Easy. The overall storytelling is excellent and the characters and dialogue are even better. This debut issue reeled me in as soon as I opened it and as I kept reading, I laughed and I winced and I fell in love with it. 

Our Score:


A Look Inside