Review: Butcher Baker: The Righteous Maker #1

Published on April 5th, 2011

BOOBS!!! That was my attention-grabber. But, it’ll also be relevant as you read the rest of the review. So… who likes tales of pseudo-debauchery, misogyny, “patriotism”, pulp violence, and one weird penis panel? You? Good! Well, sit the fuck down and read this! ‘Cause you ain’t gonna believe this shit!

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Butcher Baker is a has-been, disillusioned, desensitized narrator (He’s telling the story in-panel to the audience through his Star Spangled big rig’s CB radio). He longs for the days of the true heroes, when you could slap on your gear and you knew who the good guys and villains were. Nowadays, the dude simply DOESN’T GIVE A FUCK. What he’s mostly cares about is how he can get his rocks off and how easy it’s gonna be. And if the goal is taking too long, he’s gonna go out of his way to entertain himself; no matter how dangerous, illegal, or insane.

Issue #1 kicks off with two government officials (obvious, yet near spot-on visual caricatures of Jay Leno and Dick Cheney) arriving at Baker’s hedonistic bachelor pad, Plato’s Retreat in New York City. The rest of the plot is pretty straightforward. Jay and Dick inform BB that the general public has become tired of their tax dollars going to house and feed the scores of supervillains Butcher has incarcerated over the years. Now, the government has come to the decision that they want the special meta-prison known as “The Crazy Keep” simply wiped out. Baker seems bored with his life and is looking to get back into the game, but he’s also jaded and cynical about how pathetic the world has become. Although, he also seems to relish the fact that Uncle Sam has come crawling back to him for help and basically rubs his over-the-top lifestyle in their collective face. The dude’s having sex with about six women while the gov’ment stooges are making their proposal.

I’m not sure which I like more, the writing or the art/colors. The dialogue and storyline made me laugh several times and it kinda takes a new POV from that retired-superhero-genre we’ve seen a few times. As for the visuals, I was surprised how much it engaged me. The cover of the book is almost a perfect representation of what you find inside: a contrast of greys surrounded by these other bright colors. It brought a nice balance that complemented the narrative of the book. One thing that readers might find detracting is that while you can see that this story is the beginning of an on-going series, it didn’t feel like it was leading into a bigger arc. It could easily have been a #0 or a one-shot. Either way, this book is fantastic and I hope people pick it up so it goes for a while. Image Comics strikes again!

Hopefully I didn’t build it up too much. It’s one of those books that you really have to read to get the full experience.

Sam Taylor
Sam@ComicImpact.com