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Kick-Ass #3 Review

Kick-Ass #3 review by Hugo Bravo

Written by Mark Millar
Art by by John Romita, Jr.

Mark Millar's Kick Ass is a hero for the Facebook generation. While other books are constantly rewriting the origins of their characters at an attempt to make them more relatable to a new age group of readers, Mark Millar creates one that completely lives and breathes within our society. The third issue of his debut begins with Kick-Ass having just saved a stranger from a violent attack. The scene quickly goes where all events go these days: to the World Wide Web. The YouTube video is seen by thousands, and just like any star of the internet, he becomes somewhat of a celebrity to the masses. Instead of the authorities asking who that masked man is, he gets tabloids like TMZ writing stories on him, and late night talk show hosts giving him shout-outs.

A story like this can only work if the main character is likeable enough to be accepted as the loser he is. Luckily, David Lizewski, with his obsession for Joss Whedon's Astonishing X-Men and Amazon-bought scuba suit that doubles as his costume, is the 'every guy' superhero that hasn't been seen in comics for a long time. He's not a jock or a brainy nerd, he's just a regular teenager who reads comic books. Mark Millar does a stellar job reminding us that David is a young, slightly stupid kid before he's a superhero. Who else but a child like David would dub himself with a name like Kick-Ass? Like the typical teenage boy, he'll do whatever it takes to have a girl give him any sort of attention, from embracing a chance to be her sexually non-threatening male companion, to accepting a nameless stranger's request for help, simply because she sounded like she might go out with him if he sorts this out. John Romita's artwork shines in every page of this issue, especially in Kick-Ass himself. There's something undeniably cool about seeing a little holder in the back screwed on to the back of his costume for his batons, which look like sticks wrapped in green duct tape. Even when the series shifts gears from standard teenage drama to over the top Tarantino-esque violence, as it does in this issue, it never seems to be misplaced or awkward. Romita deserves as much credit for making the book what it is as Millar does.

What starts out as a shining moment in David's new superhero career finishes with once again Kick-Ass getting in way over his head, after answering a request for help (through his MySpace page, with thousands of friends ). Mark Millar hits us with a violent, sadistic conclusion to this issue that further explores the world of David Lizewski lives in, and the effect that his new superhero presence is having on it. Though this was slightly explored in the opening pages of the first issue, it's shown in graphic detail here, and it hits you harder than a bottle flying to the back of Kick-Ass' head.

The last time that Mark Millar tried a series like this was the epic Wanted, and like Wesley Gibson, David Lizewki reaches into every comic book fan's secret desire to run around and perform those amazing feats we all read about in comics. The only thing that worries me is how future arcs will be handled with a character like Kick-Ass. After all, as much crime and corruption as we have in the real world, how many times can bones break and how many beatdowns can someone in our world possibly withstand?

Rating: 8

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