When I got a copy of the Lowlifes trade paperback, I wasn’t really sure what to expect. What I got was an entertaining crime story that gives a slow burn at first, but ended with me wanting more.
Lowlifes is the story of several people in Los Angeles connected to a singular criminal in one way or another. You’ve got a dirty cop who doesn’t want to be, an underground fighter, and a drug addict. That might sound cliche, but all are woven into a strong story about life, death, morality, and relationships.
Brian Buccellato pulls off something rare in storytelling in Lowlifes Vol. 1. He makes you relate to characters and dislike the things they do at the same time. His players in this story seem real in the way the people in an HBO documentary do, meaning there’s very little pretty about them, but they’re so compelling you can’t look away.
The story is complimented by the exceptional art of Alexis Sentenac. The people in this story look like they’re in real emotional and physical pain when the story calls for it, as well as mundane backgrounds (houses, interiors etc) looking like the work of an artist who put in long hours making sure the finished picture was something to be proud of.
As well as the first four issues of the series, the back of the trade has a sketchbook and interviews as well as a cover gallery. It’s a nice amount of bonus content and adds to the overall look and feel of the book. The creator interviews give some good insight as well, and while I usually ignore these types of things, I found myself really interested in what both the author and artist had to add.
All things considered, Lowlifes is a very good book. I’ve read some of Buccellato’s work before but after reading this I intend to check out any of his creator owned books from here on out. His work on Flash and Detective are good, but much like Jeff Lemire, I suspect his true talent will continue to flourish with the universes he creates just for his own stories. I recommenced this book highly, and suggest you make some time to read it in it’s entirety, in one sitting.
- Art fits story very well
- Characters are easy to relate to
- Solid cliffhanger ending
- Starts a bit slow
- Reads better in trade (only a con if you hate trade waiting)