Kill or be Killed #4 (review)
Image Comics, November 2016
Writer: Ed Brubaker
It is hard to think of a more consistent duo in comics than that of writer Ed Brubaker and artist Sean Phillips. Since their first collaboration as part of 1999’s The Scene of the Crime, the pair have produced a film noir-inspired body of work every bit as lethal as their gun-toting characters. Where they go, readers have proved willing to follow with critical acclaim and consistent sales.
It is a reliability that has paid off as the two have recently signed contracts to create exclusively for American publisher Image Comics. As part of their unique deal, Messrs Brubaker and Phillips are able to create without pitching their ideas for editorial approval. Whatever premise they want to pursue, in other words, is guaranteed to print. This is a rare, remarkable and precious freedom amongst the larger players in the American industry, which so often rejects ideas based on crude demographics and projected sales. If successful, it is the kind of deal that Image, a publisher with a history of empowering creators, would be likely to offer talent in the future.