Story Synopsis: Frank Miller’s Sin City Vol. 4: That Yellow Bastard

Cops have not been the paragon of virtue as of late, John Hartigan however is different.  Find out what he is willing to do to save a young girl’s life in this week’s Comic Rewind, Frank Miller’s Sin City Vol. 4: That Yellow Bastard.

A serial killer was on a killing spree for far too long.  He would take little girls, have his way with them and then kill them slowly.  He liked to hear them scream.  Every cop knew who it was, but couldn’t catch him in the act.  However, the biggest obstacle was he was a powerful senator’s son, Senator Roark.

Hartigan didn’t care if he had to take on the world; he wouldn’t let him take another victim besides he was an hour from retirement.  Hartigan and his partner tracked down the Roark brat and Hartigan was determined to save the latest victim.  An 11-year-old girl, Nancy Callahan.

Sin City

It was hard because of Hartigan’s heart condition, but Hartigan saved Callahan and permanently disfigured little Roark.  However, Hartigan’s partner, Bob, double-crossed Hartigan and set him up to take the fall for the serial killings and the abduction of Callahan.  Senator Roark said he would go easier on Hartigan if he admitted that he kidnaped Callahan.  However, Hartigan held strong and never admitted it, but also never denied it.

Callahan snuck into Hartigan’s hospital room to thank him and said she would write him under the pseudonym, Cordelia.  Every week for eight years Cordelia wrote letters to Hartigan, but one week it stopped.  For months Hartigan didn’t receive a letter until one day a yellow man appeared in his cell with the severed finger of a 19-year-old woman.  Hartigan is dead set on getting out and finding Callahan, but who was that yellow bastard?

Frank Miller’s Sin City Vol. 4: That Yellow Bastard was written and drawn by Frank Miller.  Dark Horse Comics published the volume in 2010.

Sin City’s Neo-Noir May Be The Best Noir

It’s been a while since I’ve reviewed a noir comic.  I thought I’d change it up a bit and review a neo-noir comic.  This is my type of noir.  The line between good and evil is blurred and even a good cop can be on the wrong side of the law.

For those who think that Sin City or this story sounds familiar this was a story segment in the 2005 movie, Sin City.

Sin City

Hartigan May Be The Only Non-Criminal In Sin City

Out of all the different stories in that movie this is definitely my favorite.  I love the almost retired hero getting dragged into something big.  Hartigan fighting for something bigger than himself using sheer determination and grit is inspirational.  

This comic kept me guessing and on the edge of my seat the entire time.  Everytime I thought Hartigan was in the clear a new obstacle arose.

The entire Sin City story is not your typical noir story with a good person caught up in a bad situation.  These are all bad people with a heart of gold and they are the bad situations, but they happen to be on the right side.  Even Hartigan who is a paragon of virtue is on the criminal side of the law because of Senator Roark.  Hartigan is the last person a criminal wants to see.  He is the poster child for the term badass.

Sin City Has Black And White Art Done In A New Way And It’s Great

The art in this comic is almost all black and white.  However, the way it is used is really interesting.  Most comics would use a white background with black drawings, but Miller does the opposite.  It uses the negative white space in a cool way and when you do see cool like the Yellow Bastard it stands out a lot.

If you like noir crime stories, but don’t want a noir film from the 1940s then check out neo-noir.  If you don’t know where to start with neo-noir then Sin City is a great start.  That Yellow Bastard is a great little teaser as to what noir comics can bring to the table.  



Where To Buy This Comic

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