THE BLACK MONDAY MURDERS
released OUT NOW! Publisher Image Comics
Writer Jonathan Hickman Artist Tomm Coker
If you want a slow-burning, intricately constructed comic-book epic, call Jonathan Hickman. From his runs on Fantastic Four and Avengers to comics like The Manhattan Projects and East Of West, Hickman specialises in writing dense, fiercely imaginative sagas, and his latest ongoing series is no exception.
The central concept of The Black Monday Murders is that all the world’s major banking organisations are also secret occult societies that have been manipulating humanity for thousands of years. A murder on Wall Street pulls a police detective into an increasingly dark and twisted investigation, and the series is soon mixing a gripping mystery with some fascinating worldbuilding.
Hickman has often played with the idea of an elite that controls the world, but this particular take feels especially resonant. Much of the story’s background is delivered through extra pages of text and diagrams – these first three issues all weigh in at over 50 pages. Meanwhile Tomm Coker’s photo-real artwork gives the series a shadowy, noir-esque atmosphere. This complex, demanding comic is one of 2016’s most impressive and intriguing debuts. Saxon Bullock
Hickman has another ongoing series starting in November – dark SF saga Frontier, which he’s illustrating himself.
Not likely to forgive your debts, then.