• Hangman, The #3



    Hangman, The #3
    Released by: Black Circle Comics
    Released on: March 9th, 2016.
    Written by: Frank Tieri
    Illustrated by: Felix Ruiz
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    When issue two finished up, Mikey Ice was in Hell where the devil himself talked to him about becoming the new Hangman.

    This third issue beings at the W. Peter Blatty Primary School (not sure I’d send my kids there) where a kid named Nelson picks on a smaller, nerdier, funny talking kid for an issue that arose when he tried to copy off of his math test. Nelson kicks this kid to the ground and gives him no choice but to fight back, and when he does the kid calls him on his uncle molesting him years back one summer. Nelson’s nose starts to bleed, he hunches over, he asks this other kid to stop but it’s too late. Before this weird kid can instruct Nelson to go to his uncle’s house and kill him, Ms. Black shows up and puts a stop to it. It’s then that we learn the weird kid’s name is, of course, Dante. He calls her out, privately, on her tone and she apologizes and addresses him as ‘my Lord.’

    The two of them get into the back of a car and it’s here that Black tells Dante that there’s a new Hangman. Black tells him she feels he is approachable and that being the case, Dante says it’s time they approach him.

    Outside the home where Mikey ‘Ice’ Minetta once lived, the new Hangman stares through the window and watches his wife kiss his weeping daughter goodnight. From there, some black liquid of some sort pulls him away to a rundown apartment where he confusingly confronts a guy named Jack and the hooker he’s hired for the night. Jack pays her double and sends her on her way. Jack knows who the Hangman is, but that’s not a two way street. He explains to Mikey that, well, he’s his scribe. Since he was Dickering’s scribe, that’d be Minetta’s predecessor, it only makes sense, or so he tells him.

    All Minetta wants, however, is to get back to his family. He knows that there are people out there who would do them harm based on his past life as a ruthless assassin. But Jack tells him he can’t do that. It’s against the rules. And then Ms. Black shows up.

    So with his new position as The Hangman in place, this issue sees Minetta learning the ropes (ha!). And so to do we, through his experiences, get some ground rules established as to what he can and cannot do in his new gig. Tierri does all of this with a lot of grit and a decidedly dark bent, never shying away from the blood and guts that will probably always be a part of this dark, horrific kinda-sorta superhero story. We’ll see how that goes but at this point, The Hangman is pretty compelling and addictive stuff. Felix Ruiz’s artwork complements the writing beautifully, as he clearly prefers a darker palette and a grittier style of illustration. Clearly, that suits things just fine.

    And on top of that, in the back pages we get an essay called Seduction Of The Innocent: A Study Of Evil by Sean T. Collins that sheds some light on the history of evil kids in pop culture, tying Dante into stories like The Omen, Children Of The Damned and stuff like that. We get another great Tim Bradstreet cover too. All in all, this is another great issue.