Night Moves #1
Writers: V.J. Boyd, Justin Boyd
Artist: Clay McCormack
Colorist: Mike Spicer
Letterer: Shawn DePasquale
Review by Michael Farris, Jr.
Night Moves #1 introduces us to Chris Dundee, a Vegas hustler who ends up in a demon-fueled mess just by trying to talk to a pretty lady at the bar. While he’s busy chatting up a female cop and giving her tips about catching a local crime boss, three priests walk in with shotguns demanding to put an end to Satan’s evil plans currently taking place. This leads them on a chase that involves the crime lord calling in debts and possibly opening a portal to hell.
When I saw this book mixes noir and the occult into one story, I was skeptical but couldn’t help but be intrigued. After reading this book, I’m glad my curiosity paid off. Noir and the occult are two genres that you wouldn’t think to put together, but when you do, it’s a magical blend akin to peanut butter and chocolate.
The story starts out 40 years into the future with ol’ Mr. Dundee telling a youth his story, then flashes back to the present day. I liked this feature because it gives us a modern-day detective story rather than the typical 1940s-I-was-up-late-when-a-dame-walked-in story we’re used to. The writing was very smooth, and even though there is one page in particular that is text-heavy, it’s easy to read through.
The cultist-and-priest fight is the cherry on top that really makes this story. Crime in Las Vegas is already an open invitation to get into a gritty story, but shotgun-wielding priests, subdued people with demon masks, and a bloody room full of headless bodies really ups the creep factor to where you can’t look away and have to find out more.
The artwork worked well for the story. At some points, the lighting the colorist uses really gives you the feeling that you are experiencing a hazy, neon-lit Vegas night. The above-mentioned, text-heavy page was also laid out quite cleverly, in my opinion. Additionally, there was one panel that reminded me a lot of the famous Nighthawks painting.
Verdict: Buy it.
Night Moves #1 shows a lot of potential for what can be the perfect blend of crime and hell (and Vegas is the perfect setting for the two to come together!). All that’s missing is someone waking up to the head of one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse in their bed.