Blame it on Johnny Depp, but pirates have been quite popular over the past few years, continuously battling zombies and sparkly vampires for the title of king of the pop culture genres. While I wasn’t a huge fan of the Disney films, I did have my pirate phase as a young comic book sniffer, and the comic medium seems a perfect home for these scurvy dogs! (Am I right? Tales of the Black Freighter, anyone?) Not wanting to be the last to walk the plank, Action Lab Entertainment has thrown its peg leg into the ring with Pirate Eye: A Pirate’s Life is Not for Me, a comic book cross between the classic “pirate” tale and the noir elements present in Raymond Chandler’s detective fiction.
MINOR SPOILERS BELOW
Action Lab Entertainment is currently going the one-shot route with Pirate Eye, producing self-contained solo stories instead of running the book as a miniseries or ongoing series. This seems like a smart move, providing multiple adventures for the lead character of Smitty and even more closely emulating the serialized crime tales that partially inspired Pirate Eye. In Pirate Eye: A Pirate’s Life is Not for Me, Smitty (when he’s not getting hit in the face) attempts to help a young and reluctant pirate who wishes to get “out of the life” without the usual “watery grave” exit interview. Writer Joe Grahn has created a charismatic and engaging pirate hero with Smitty, and Pirate Eye immediately gives the reader an idea of the kind of adventures to expect from this pirate gumshoe. Artist Carl Yonder has a perfect art style for the book, keeping the visuals dark and gritty (as a pirate story should be), magnificently using his colorist skills to “light” several scenes by lantern light, which just nails the proper atmosphere of this noir-influenced, swashbuckling tale!
That’s all for now, comic book sniffers! Until next time, try not to get hit in the face too often while solving those cases!
‘Till the end of the world,
-Bryant the Comic Book Slayer