Conrad is a professional thief and he’s good. Very good. But to clear his conscience and make up for past deeds he only steals from thieves. If you have never read Thief of Thieves then this is definitely the issue for you to jump in on as it begins a new story arc. Previous issues had him rethinking his life choices and whether or not he should stay in the game. Now, he’s successfully doing what he does best and honoring his own moral code.
For those of you who are new to the Thief of Thieves verse, this comic book series is from Robert Kirkman’s (Walking Dead) Skybound Entertainment. Skybound is considered indie because they are an imprint of Image Comics. The series premiered in 2012 and features rotating writers, however,Martinbrough has been the artist for the entire run. (The series is also supposed to be in development on AMC so I’m really excited to see that).
This new arc introduces a couple of new characters who are not really interested in Conrad’s new job description or moral compass. They are, however, assembling a team of thieves for an unnamed mission, which in and of itself is interesting, because Conrad (even when forced) always plans his own ops and picks his own team. His former apprentice and now love interest Celia, “has his six” both on the job and off and is his unfiltered conscience on occasion. She’s always there for him, both figuratively and literally as is the case when a quick exit has him jumping out of a skyscraper with a previously stolen artifact unexpectedly.
Everything seems to be going well until Conrad’s new gig forces Conrad from being the cat who caught the canary to a mouse in a maze.
What I Think
I am a fan of this series because no one is “powered”. It’s just good writing that plays out like episodic television. I like how Andy Diggle writes the banter between Celia and Conrad and how in a split second she can go from doting to deadly. I am a fan of his writing style because it’s not overly descriptive, but realistic and allows the reader to shift between the dialogue and Martinbrough’s artwork effortlessly.
I also enjoy how Martinbrough interprets action scenes*. The energy and direction that he puts into the line work seamlessly follow the action without missing any of the unfolding narrative. Adriano Lucas’ bold color palette only adds to the energy and gives the artwork a welcome dimension and give this work a look of it’s own.
Thief of Thieves is definitely a noir comic with enough violence and innuendo that I would not recommend it for kids, but teens and up can handle it. The Bond-like action scenes are drawn and written exceptionally well and although I miss Special Agent Elizabeth Cohen, (I hope to see her pop up somewhere in this arc) I’m excited to see this new turn and can’t wait to see how Conrad gets out of it.
* Definitely check out the fight scene he drew between Luke Cage and Tombstone in the rain in Luke Cage Noir as an example.
Writer: Andy Diggle
Artist: Shawn Martinbrough
Colorist: Adriano Lucas
Editor: Jon Moisan
Cover Art: Shawn Martinbrough & Adriano Lucas
Publisher: Image Comics/Skybound
Release Date: 6/22/16
32p, color, digital