Last year, Vertigo, a publisher that has delighted us more than once or twice with violent and uncompromising stories that have become classics of the format, has effectively ceased its 27-year existence. All of Imprint’s “adult” series have moved to DC Black Label. In this article, Steve O’Neil, essay writer, offers readers a look back at some of the most high-profile works released by the once excellent publisher.
Scriptwriter: Brian Azzarello
Artist: Eduardo Risso
What would you do if you got the chance to commit murder and got away with it? The heroes of the comic book will have to find the answer to that question. A mysterious agent Graves, pushes them into an obscure game by giving them a briefcase with a gun, a hundred untraceable bullets, and a picture of the man who killed their lovers. The heroes and villains here are completely random people: an ice cream man who moonlights selling stolen cigarettes, a bar owner accused of distributing child pornography, a waitress whose daughter is missing. To them and many others, Graves gives this gift and this curse. Will they pull the trigger?
A noir story from Brian Azzarello and Eduardo Risso about the world’s greatest loyalty and most insidious betrayal, about retribution, power, and consequence, about ordinary people, caught up in femme fatales, animal killers, troubled souls and, maybe, just maybe, redemption. But remember, all is not what it seems.
Scriptwriter: Garth Ennis
Artist: Steve Dillon, Glenn Fabry
Jesse Custer is a Catholic priest. He becomes a bearer of a brand new essence – Genesis – and at the same time, he possesses extraordinary abilities. With support from his girlfriend and his newfound vampire companion, he sets out in search of God to make the vile bastard answer for all the mayhem going on in the world. A terrific story full of freaks of all colors and stripes, it is perhaps one of the most interesting and unusual westerns in the industry. Preacher is rich with colorful characters, the most boring of which is God. The story served as King’s inspiration, and Jesse became one of the most popular comic book characters.
Scriptwriter: Warren Ellis
Artist: Darick Robertson
Spider Jerusalem is by no means the easiest resident of the City. In fact, he’s a maddeningly fanatical journalist who won’t come to negotiate with an informant without his favorite weapon, the gut wrench. In an effort to show people the truth, he stops at nothing: not at the authority of the president, not at the diagnosis of imminent death, and not at the potentially dangerous consequences.
The place of action, the City, deserves its own material. The boiling cauldron of life here does not stop for a minute, giving rise every hour to dozens of new religions and social currents. Of course, any resident of this futuristic metropolis will seem to you, at the very least, a valuable exhibit.
V FOR VENDETTA
Scriptwriter: Alan Moore
Artist: David Lloyd
Plot: A comic book about the confrontation between man and rotten power. This time from the master Alan Moore. The events of the story take place in the post-nuclear war world, where the Nazis came to power. We never see whose face is hiding under the mask, which has become widely known in the world, but it does not matter: Vendetta has made himself a symbol of the revolution, for a long time being its only participant. It’s a joke, but now many of our compatriots, who are strangers to British history, often hang the famous poem “Remember, remember the 5th of November” on their social media pages.
Scriptwriter: Bill Willingham
Artist: Mark Buckingham, Lan Medina, Steve Leialoha, Craig Hamilton
Plot: After losing the war, the fairy tale creatures relocate to modern America, which they even like. With their magical powers, the fairy folk have hidden their existence from the world but nevertheless enjoy all the benefits available to them. But along with the benefits came many other things. Imagine for a moment: what would Prince Charming’s many marriages look like in real life? And how would Pinocchio, forever transformed into a little boy, feel? Curious already? The whole story revolves around a new fairy tale government that is trying to somehow regulate the lives of the fantasy brethren. Detective stories, government conspiracies, unusual interpretations of familiar characters, and memorable humor all await Fables readers.