Deadly Class #3: It Just Gets Better and Better
Marcus and Willie are on their way to BFF status after the happenings in Deadly Class #3. Remender punctuates a book about getting to know each other and trusting new friends with a shocker on the last page! I’ve come to expect excellence from this creative team. And, they deliver on a fantastic script and beautiful art that continue to work as one. I cannot get enough of Deadly Class!
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Remender shows off Marcus’ street smarts in Deadly Class #3. Although a life on the streets sets Marcus apart from his schoolmates, it has prepared him for the cold realities of making the grade at Kings Dominion School of the Deadly Arts.
Marcus and Willie run across the city rooftops taking huge risks together by jumping the gaps between buildings. The mix of confidence and doubt they display in their nocturnal runnings mirrors the power struggle Marcus experiences among his new “friends” and classmates. Choosing when to help, when to be honest, and when to lie—all these choices matter when displaying your strength and dominance. In Deadly Class #3, Willie gets schooled by Marcus in a lesson about honesty and bravery. Then Willie teaches Marcus a thing or two about the latest in hip-hop. It’s all good among friends.
Now, on to the assignment for AP Black Arts: Marcus finds a target worth killing through his street contacts. He buys some ‘ludes from Rory and hears about a man with no face (“the formless face of Satan”) that’s come through the camp. Rory sets Marcus and Willie on the path of the targeted homeless man. The duo does find this guy. (You’ll remember seeing him in Deadly Class #1.) The killing does not go exactly as planned—because, what fun would that be? In the aftermath, Remender and Craig give us a glimpse of Willie’s upbringing in a moment he shares with Marcus. Meanwhile a threatening figure watches them from the shadows. Marcus and Willie realize that they only have one option after the botched assassination attempt. The final scene is Deadly Class #3 is shocking and a bit tragic—you really should read it for yourself.
What I love about Deadly Class #3, well there is so much, is Remender’s pacing of the story. This issue was fairly quiet and thick with relationship building. The moments of action do two things: they further the relationship by creating shared experiences between Willie and Marcus; and they give the reader a free-fall feeling because you aren’t sure what the outcome is until you turn the page. Well done, really, they get that not every issue can be break-neck action from start to finish.
Wes Craig and Lee Loughridge continue to deliver pages with detail and atmosphere. My favorite panels are where Craig shows characters in motion. The body poses are fantastic. I’ve go on about the coloring before, and it is still as good as the fabulous debut issue.
Recommendation: I can’t be more clear—pick up Deadly Class. It is selling out. Make it a pull-list must have!