Monday, 7 September 2015

Double Cross: More or Less by Tony Consiglio Review


Double Cross: More or Less is a comic you’ve never heard of by a creator you’ve also never heard of - Tony Consiglio - and likely won’t read, instead probably picking the latest crap from Marvel or DC over this (really, how many times can someone read about The Avengers punching some evil aliens and saving the world again without wanting to stick your brain in a blender?). 

It’s a shame not just because of the bigger publishers crowding out good small books like this, but also if an indie comic isn’t saying or doing anything especially profound or new, it gets ignored. Double Cross is about a guy in his late 20s who wants to independently publish his mini-comic to prove to himself that he’s more than the crappy jobs he takes to make rent. Not a ground-breaking story but one told really well, yet creating a well-written story alone tends to mean it’ll get too easily lost in the comics marketplace. 

Double Cross is kind of sit-com-y (albeit raunchier) in a good way because it’s a comic with a fine sense of humour. Tony’s girlfriend’s brother having sex with an amputee whose fake leg becomes a prop in the finale, Tony’s conversation with his infuriating mother playing out like a designed-to-lose board game, and the little humiliations that are a white collar schlub’s everyday lot are all amusing episodes. I didn’t bust a gut reading this (except for that pun panel) but I smiled a lot through it and that’s great. 

But the comic also has moments of surrealism with Tony day-dreaming of flying, representing the desire to be free spiritually and creatively. It also has great characters like Tony’s dopey but kind-hearted brother who looks out for him. I don't think this is an autobiographical comic but parts of it feel like glimpses of Consiglio's reality worked into the fictional plot and that gives the overall story more weight. Too many comics forget that adding just a smidge of humanity to it makes all the difference. 

This isn’t a comic that’ll change anyone’s lives, it’s “just” a good comic (forgetting how difficult it is to create one of those in the first place!) that’s entertaining and enjoyable to read. It’s real, it’s humorous, it's well put-together and I really liked it. Assuming you’re not a superhero-only comics reader, I’m sure you’ll like it too - well worth a look (and apologies to you Tony Consiglio for using your comic as a soap box)!

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