Friday, January 7, 2011

Hitman -- Garth Ennis & John McCrea

After reading the news about the upcoming television adaptation of Brian Michael Bendis' Alias comic, I wanted to re-read the books. So I headed up to the attic to look for my copies.

I never found them, though, because I got distracted by Tommy Monaghan.

He's a superpowered hitman. He uses telepathy and x-ray vision and his unbeatable aim (not superpowered, though those he comes up against may wonder) to take out superpowered targets. He's got a moral code, though, and only goes after the bad guys.

He doesn't even use his superpowers to cheat at cards, though he's been known to use telepathy to get in good with the ladies. He's not out to save the world -- he just wants enough money for beer and cigarettes. And, someday, to retire to somewhere that isn't Gotham City.

In Hitman, the first collection, we get Tommy's origin story (his superpowers manifested after he was fed on by an alien parasite thingie), his first run-in with Batman:

and a three-parter where Tommy breaks into Arkham Asylum to kill the Joker. The interaction between Tommy and Batman is hilarious -- Batman is his usual broody There Is Right And There Is Wrong self, which comes off as especially obnoxious when contrasted with Tommy, who sees the world in a much more Shades of Gray way -- and even though I'm a huge Batman fan, I always, always, always find myself rooting for Tommy.

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