Review: Dead Man’s Party
Charles Willis is a man living his wildest dream—a hit man with a nearly perfect record, a professional killer.
In Dead Man’s Party, a four-part action drama by Jeff Marsick and Scott Barnett, Willis (known as “ghost” by his peers) does it all with a quickness and grace reminiscent of the classic James Bond, jumping deftly from mission to mission and handling assassination like an art. Then one day he runs into a challenge not often seen in this action packed genre: he gets a note from his doctor. The news is broken to him that he has pancreatic cancer, and even at best he has less than two months to survive.
It’s too late to bother with treatment options, and his strength will most likely begin to fail him in a matter of days, but Willis wants to go out with a bang worthy of his reputation, leaving at the top of his game. He’s going to have a party. A dead man’s party. And all his biggest enemies are invited to attend so they can try to kill him before the cancer does.
This unusual twist of James Bond and The Bucket List is carried out with stunning artwork and brimming with unforeseen twists. It is fast-paced and never lets the action hold still for very long, but still the plot holds a thoughtful aura about it that may attract fans from all over the comic book spectrum. Dead Man’s Party does have a lot of mature content in violence, nudity and language, but the story underneath comes out surprisingly strong and vibrant, enough for practically anyone to enjoy. It blends everything wonderful about the action genre with a deeper and more serious undertone brought on by the knowledge of Willis’s imminent death. Also there is an interesting game-like aspect to the story in that a number of people are out to kill him, enemies lurking around every corner. And he invited them each to fight him and try to outdo him before the cancer does.
For those who are craving a good story and don’t mind excessive language and violence, Dead Man’s Party might be just the thing. It’s exciting, packed to the brim with action, and very unpredictable, and the way the plot builds keeps readers engaged with the tale.
The first two issues of Dead Man’s Party are currently for sale at its site, www.deadmansparty.org, which also has reviews about the comic and further information about the comic’s creators, as well as select retailers where the books can be found.