Sin City
Family Values

Author: Frank Miller
Artist: Frank Miller
Titan Books
RRP 9.99
ISBN 1 84576 049 2
Available 23 May 2005

A stranger rolls into Sin City in search of information about a corrupt official known as Bruno. As he uncovers more and more about Bruno's past, he is also gathering information on one of the biggest underworld gangs in Sin City. Watching his back is Miho, a roller-blading assassin who can cut down a dozen men before they even know she's there. Between them, they intend to get to the bottom of a larger mystery than anyone suspects...

Family Values is another winner in the Sin City series. It's probably also the most violent to be released so far. The stranger in this collection is none other than Dwight, who also appears in The Big Fat Kill and A Dame to Kill For. This time he's entrusted with a simple mission - and making sure he comes to no harm is Miho, a female Ninja with a vicious streak.

While this collection is not quite as engaging as previous instalments, there is some serious mileage to be had thanks, in part, to the character of Miho. The way she takes apart her victims is quite unnerving. She can be quick and clean, but if she is antagonised she plays with her prey like a cat with a mouse.

As with other releases in this series, the black and white illustrations help set the mood of the grim hell hole that is Sin City. They are also quite sick, as we've come to expect, but also incredibly complex. There's something quite beautiful in seeing Miho kicking off the head of a bad guy. Now, I never thought I'd say that about such violent act.

There is a twist in the tale, which you won't be able to work out until the final few panels - so don't even try. Family Values is certainly worth picking up.

Darren Rea

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