Monday, March 26, 2007

Again With the Comics Does Hard Time

After the recent Omega the Unknown review I posted, I wanted to mention that Hard Time, also written by Steve Gerber and Mary Skrenes is outstanding, and recommended without reservation. Hard Time is the story of 15-year old Ethan Harrow, prison inmate. Ethan gets caught up in a revenge prank gone horribly wrong, is tried as an adult for multiple murders he didn't commit, and gets sent to prison on a fifty-year stretch. He also has a latent power, the ability to leave his physical body in an energy form, an ability that becomes both a gift and a curse that saves him from danger almost as often as it endangers him. As the series progresses, Ethan gains enemies and allies among the cast of characters, and the quick-witted teen learns to survive in the cruel prison world. There's humor and horror inside prison walls, and we see both in these pages. Hard Time is another series that was cancelled far too soon, but the final issue wraps things up in a what turns out to be total data dump, but a very cleverly crafted and entertaining one. Artist Brian Hurtt does a fantastic job throughout as well, and his skills grow noticeably as the series progresses.

Hard Time ran for 12 issues under DC's Focus banner, then it was absorbed into their larger line, where it was relaunched as Hard Time: Season Two, then cancelled after seven issues. I think it got devoured in by the Infinite Crisis hoopla. What there was, was great, and if you get a chance to read it, do so.


Jason said...

This was a great book, that should've been in the Vertigo line (where it would probably still be running today). I picked up the first trade and waited and waited for the second one. I'm still waiting. I guess I'm going to have to take the plunge and pick up the rest of the issues.

Brian Hughes said...

Yeah, that's the big qualifier, there-if-you can get the issues, it's a great read, but it hasn't all been collected. If they're available, snatch 'em up!