comicsthegathering dot com logo

Dante #1

by TalkNerdy2Me on January 25, 2017

Writers: Matt Hawkins & Jason Ning

Artist: Darick Robertson

Colors: Diego Rodriguez

Publisher: Image


My first thought about this book, based solely on the cover art, was “wow, another ‘Assassin’s Creed’ knockoff?” Within a few pages, I was put in mind of other stories and setups from the hitman genre, most notably “Lady Killer” (the whole suburban double life) and “Deadpool” (the meeting with his mentor in crummy dive bar). And while I enjoy both of those properties immensely, this book isn’t served very well by its comparison with them. By the time I got to the obligatory double cross that came around the midpoint, I was flipping pages just to get through it. 


The plot, what there is of it, is thin and pretty much trades on the well-worn tropes of “killer for hire” stories. Dante wants to get out of the game, but he’s told he needs to make one last big score and then he can walk. That turns out not to be the case, of course, and there’s some “ancient Chinese secret” curse junk dumped on top of the whole mishmash for good measure.


I try not to worry too much about identity politics when I’m reading comics, but the start to this story relied too much on ethnic and gender stereotypes for my comfort level. Dante’s family, complete with hot wife, cute blonde daughter, and little white kitty, exist solely to be taken from him so that we can see his emotional pain. Even the daughter of his first hit, now an escort girl, plays the ‘abused female’ role so we can see Dante rescue her and know that he’s a good dude who just so happens to kill people for money.


It’s a real shame that the writing is so subpar, since the art by Darick Robertson is actually quite good. It took me longer than it should have to place where I knew his work from, but I caught myself thinking that Ruby could have been called “filthy assistant”. Robertson was artist and co-creator of “Transmetropolitan”, one of most excellent and essential comics it’s ever been my pleasure to read. “Dante” isn’t worth two tugs of dead dog’s cock in comparison.

Our Score:


A Look Inside