Friday, November 26, 2010

Greek Street volume 2 by Milligan and Gianfelice

Greek Street volume 2: Cassandra Complex by Peter Milligan and Davide Gianfelice. Vertigo $14.99
Reviewed by Peter Coleborn

The comic’s title says it all: Greek Street. It involves characters called Furey and Dedalus and Medea. There are visions and vengeance and Oedipal crimes… You won’t need a second guess to work out that in this graphic novel Greek drama is heavily – and cleverly – interwoven: a tragedy repeated as a contemporary thriller.

The action centres round a strip club in Greek Street, Soho, London, run by the thuggish Fureys. Eddie is on the run from just about everyone. (In the previous volume he arrived in Soho searching for his mother. He found her, slept with her, and killed her – he insists that these last two events were both accidental.) Meanwhile, Lord Menon has his own issues: girls seduced and cast off, a daughter maddened with visions, murder, dark secrets – and a wife who apparently commits suicide.

Writer Peter Milligan and artist Davide Gianfelice have wrought a superb Greek tragedy, of discovery and loss – with references to the plays of ancient Athens. They obviously understand their source material but never overload the story with research. The plotting is tight and fast paced. There is little space for reflection or exposition, no long-winded explanations. You got to keep up. If you don’t have a good memory re-read volume one before embarking on Greek Street: Cassandra Complex. In fact, re-read it anyway – and saviour the complete story (although, annoyingly, the drama is not resolved by the end of this book).

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