Goon’s Badass Again

Just when you thought “The Goon” series was getting mushy, writer and penciler Eric Powell writes one of the grittiest trades in comic book history. Feeling like “Reservoir Dogs” meets “The Godfather,” with “Red Dragon” over for tea, “Those That is Damned” is a must read comic for fans of the series and continuing proof that Powell not only understands what his fans want from his characters, but knows what his series needs to stay fresh and cool.

After the return of the Buzzard, Goon and Frankie makes a life-changing decision that puts a lot more pressure on the people of Lonely Street than even they’re used to. With Goon’s forever boss, Labrazio back from the dead, the debaucherous duo get tougher than ever before, resulting in some of the most gruesome scenes in the history of the industry.

If you thought Goon was an excellent anti-hero before, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

Just ask Merle the werewolf.

Just ask Goon where he put the rest of his leg and the rest of the nails that he didn’t hammer into his skull, first.

By the end of this storyline, not only will you be thrilled to see Goon back to his tough guy ways, you’ll have a completely different respect for the character. Going to lengths he’s never gone to before, while holding in his feelings, the character is even more humanized before, resulting in a connection between the material and the reader.

They don’t make many comics like this nowadays.

As a matter of fact, they’re isn’t much writing like this nowadays.

Mixing elements of sci-fi, crime-noir and toilet humor, the Goon has always been a blast to read, but the heavy focus on the machismo of Goon, as he tries to earn back his turf, takes the driver’s seat in this trade and kind of brings the series back to its roots and solidifies the toughness of it all. In previous trades, Powell dedicated a plethora of time and energy to making the characters well-rounded and deep. Now that this process has been accomplished, it feels like the real storytelling is beginning.

With the great storytelling, the art by Powell and colorist Dave Stewart is also something special, as the dark motif surrounding this trade is beautifully matched panel by panel, bringing the story alive and making for a piece of art that solidifies both of their places in the industry. Simply put, just like Goon and Frankie, it’s hard to find a better tag team than these two.

With eight trades under his belt before this one, it feels like Powell has already proved he has enough emotion, characters and content to take this series further than the five Eisner Awards he’s won for it could ever say.

What “Those That is Damned” does in that big scheme of things is help drive that notion home- harder than a hammer into a werewolf’s skull.

About Patrick Hickey Jr. 13054 Articles
Patrick Hickey Jr. is the Founder, Editor-in-Chief, Master Jedi and Grand Pooh-bah of and is the author of the book, "The Minds Behind the Games: Interviews with Cult and Classic Video Game Developers," from leading academic and non-fiction publisher McFarland and Company. He is currently the Assistant Director of the Journalism Program at Kingsborough Community College and is a former News Editor at NBC Local Integrated Media and a National Video Games Writer at the late He has also had articles and photos published in The New York Times, The New York Daily News, Complex and The Syracuse Post-Standard. Love him. Read him.

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