Writer: Brian Azzarello
Artist: Eduardo Risso
Publisher: Image Comics
Reviewed by David Hildebrand
You really can’t go wrong with the combination of gangsters and werewolves. Can you? I suppose you could, but lucky for us, Azzarello’s Moonshine doesn’t fail to meet expectations. After reading the first issue, I was immediately hooked. The werewolves were served up as a tease in the premiere issue, but in Moonshine #2 we get a better look at the lycanthropes and the type of damage they can deliver.
To bring things up to speed, the first issue was about a New York crime lord, Joe Masseria sending one his boys, Lou Pirlo, down to the hills of the Appalachian Mountains to make contact with Hiram Holt. Holt makes some real mean ass liquor and the big boss Masseria wants Pirlo to seal a deal that will get that liquor into New York so they can sell it. Pirlo makes contact and tries to deal with Holt but the situation didn’t turn out to be as easy as Pirlo thought it would be.
In Moonshine #2 the story continues with Pirlo talking with Boss Masseria. Holt isn’t up for a deal for his fine liquor, but Masseria doesn’t care and expects Pirlo to add more pressure to get things moving. Pirlo explains that Holt is a maniac, but leaves out the little fact about finding the FBI agents torn to shreds in Holt’s distillery. Pirlo tells Masseria to give him a couple more days to make a deal and this is when the it gets interesting. Holt’s kids show up and take Pirlo for a ride, they explain that their Pa might not be interested in selling the liquor, but they are. Things get intense at the end of the issue and a werewolf makes his presence known! I’m thinking this werewolf isn’t keen on any deal getting done for Holt’s liquor.
Azzarello’s writing is superb in Moonshine #2. A big way to capture my attention is to give me characters that I can get invested in. I love gangster stories in general, but they don’t always contain an interesting hero/villain. With Pirlo, I feel like I get both roles. He may be a gangster, and his past could be very brutal, we don’t have much insight into that as of yet. However, I’m excited to see what is next between him and this crazy Holt family. It takes a certain amount of skill to make one cheer for the “bad guy” and with this particular story, I am cheering for both Pirlo and the werewolves. Kudos to Azzarello.
Risso’s art just adds to the tension and atmosphere. I dig the look of this first werewolf shown, I think he looks like something out of a horror movie. Risso just adds that certain style to the story. I genuinely hope that as more werewolves are introduced, they are more customized to look different, instead of being a generic group of werewolves. The colors are gorgeous as well. I especially like the use of the blues and greens towards the end of the issue.
Buy it! Once again… GANGSTERS… WEREWOLVES! This is a unique combination that has turned out to be a very entertaining story so far. If you don’t really care for one, chances are you like the other. And with this book, you will end up liking both; and we’re only two issues in! Moonshine #2 picks up the pace and is a very fun read. I highly recommend you to pick it up.