“Oh look, Max gave a new issue of Deadly Class a 10/10 again. Largest yawn to ever be yawned.” is probably what you were thinking right before you clicked on this review, and I will be the first to admit that I’m becoming predictable in my reviews of this series. But how can I not?! Badass, emotional, amazingly illustrated, and a prefect gut-wrenching ending? This issue deserves it. Also! If you haven’t seen the trailer for the SYFY TV version of Deadly Class coming in 2019, go watch that and come back. I’ll wait.
Waiting. Waiting. *Jeopardy music*
Okay you’re back. Wasn’t that awesome?! Everyone looks ripped straight from the comic, and the action looks so well shot. I’m fanning myself like a southern belle at a barbeque just thinking about it. Well, now that we got that out of the way, onto the review!
Remender and Craig make blending action and emotion look easy! How dare they! All the revelations about the fallout of the Die for Me arc were expertly carried out to maximize the utmost gut punch emotional reaction. The scene at the end of this issue, where Marcus is about to kill Viktor, but before he can, he finds out about all the horrors that ensued during the culling arc, was as vitriolic as they come.
It was great to have Maria back. Even though she’s been back for an arc and a half, this felt like a real return to form for her. It’s nice to see her still care about Saya, since most of the first half of the series was populated by them cat fighting over Marcus. Marcus isn’t even worth hamster fighting over, much less cat fighting (I mean what teenage boy is?). Maria has always been one of the best characters since her fight against the cartel in issue thirteen or fourteen.
The art this issue is as kinetic and exciting as ever. Craig has such a talent for illustrating visually stunning and crystal clear action scenes, which always comes in handy during arcs like this. The almost frenzied rendering of these scenes could become hard to follow and muddy the narrative, but as the president of the “Wes Craig is a Genius” fanclub, I never felt the action was unclear. The sequence where Brandy and Zenzele are fighting was my favorite in the issue due to the interesting use of angles and space. (Also, those fingers flying through the page were awesomely gruesome.)
In Deadly Class, Remender and Craig have made a series that defies the parameters of the graphic novel format and also tells a plain, enjoyable story. Whenever I pitch this series to people, I describe it as a coming-of-age story hijacked by Quentin Tarantino, and this issue perfectly encapsulates why that is. I’m not so totally wrapped up in my love for this series that I can’t see why people wouldn’t like it, but that’s definitely more a personal preference problem than that the series isn’t objectively good. Deadly Class is not for everyone, but the people who it is for are sure to appreciate just how well it does its job.
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