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Shaft #2

    Todd Jordan
    Smut is good.

  • Shaft #2

    Published by: Dynamite Entertainment
    Released on: Jan. 7, 2015
    Writer: David F. Walker
    Artist: Bilquis Evely
    Cover Artist: Denys Cowan, Bill Sienkiewicz
    Purchase at Amazon

    Click HERE for last issue's write-up.

    Putting his boxing days behind him, John Shaft continues to try finding his identity in his post-Vietnam life, and applying for a job seems to be the first step in the right direction. He takes a position with a security outfit as an undercover shopper at the department store Gimbles. There he meets a sweet young lady named Arthela, who works in cosmetics, and the two become an item very quickly. A job he's good at and a blooming relationship in his life…things are looking up for Mr. Shaft.

    That is until two men barge into her apartment looking for dancer named Marisol Dupree who was last known to be living with Arthela. Catching Shaft in his skivvies, the two men have the upper hand and an available handgun so Shaft doesn't put up a fight. He knows he could have taken the two out, but for fear of his lady friend's safety he goes along with one of them to look for this Marisol person. The other of the two intruders stays behind with Arthela, she should be safe. It turns out these two thugs aren't the only ones looking for Marisol, and Shaft meets up with some white gangsters at Ike & Ron's Cocktail Lounge that ends messily for most involved. Something else Shaft learns about this situation: the people he ran into at Ike & Ron's are part of an organization that are involved in far more than just some money owed them by a dancer, and there are more than just three gangsters with whom he had a discussion.

    Issue two brings another excellent 22 pages of comic story-telling, again keeping things realistic, dramatic, and in absolute seriousness. This is developing into a cinematic-type crime drama, the type like they used to make: more story than in-your-face, brainless action. Packed with violence, some grown-up talk, and even a little bit of sex, this issue does something pretty slick during a section where Shaft and his new friend Arthela get to know each other. Normally in a movie there'd be music over a montage during some tender moments. Instead, the writer has some narration from Shaft, as he thinks of a famous song his friend wrote, and that kind of plays over the fun time montage stuff. It's a clever approach, and another testament to the obvious fact that this comic book is in good hands with Walker and Evely running the show. This is some fantastic R-rated type reading that shouldn't be allowed to fall into comic obscurity. Hopefully it won't because it's really good stuff.

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