The Archive

United States of Murder Inc.

United States of Murder Inc:  If the mob takes over America, I hope they don't turn the country into a Jersey suburb.

That's the scenario that United States of Murder Inc. sets out to explore. The mob has taken over a good portion of the country and is on uneasy terms with the federal government. Valentine Gallo is sent to deliver a message to senator on his first job as a made man. Things go south after the meeting when the senator get killed in an explosion and threatens the uneasy truce that has been the status quo. Everyone from the mob families to the FBI want answers leaving Valentine stuck and his contract killer partner Jagger Rose in a hard place trying to get them. Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming team up again to deliver an interesting take on an America that replaces patriotism and apple pie, with made men, criminal maneuvering, and codes of silence.


Valentine's ceremony. AKA: Foreshadowing.

This is a book where “Bendis-speak” actually fits. If you read any of his Marvel work its hit (Ultimate Spider-man, Daredevil) or miss (Avengers, X-Men). His style of dialog just flows a little more naturally here and the world being built is intriguing enough to stay interested in the reveals you see each issue. It's also great to see Bendis paired again with Oeming whose art works well to play off the noir setting. For those that missed out on Powers, the almost cartoonish art that seemingly emulates the tone of Batman: The Animated Series works not only with Bendis's wordplay but is awesome in his uses of perspective.

United States of Murder Inc. works in many different ways and so far the ride has been interesting. As things get further complicated for Valentine and Jagger it's great delving deeper into the lore of this broken America. At the pace it's going, it looks like a run worth following.