Armed with his Daddy’s stick, Earl Tubb has decided to stay and get some answers from the men who killed Dusty Tutwiler. Earl proves himself to be a genuine ass-kicker and has managed to piss off just about everyone in Craw County in just a few days. “Southern Bastards” #3 continues to build out this fascinating world and move the plot forward quicker than anyone could have imagined.
WRITTEN BY: Jason Aaron
ART BY: Jason Latour
RELEASE: July 2. 2014
Reviewed by Epic Switzer
“Southern Bastards” is doing for the rural south what “Fargo” did for the rural north. Aaron’s vision of a corrupt small town in Alabama is instantly iconic, and not without it’s charms. Latour’s art is raw, almost tactile. Like the people of Craw, everything is right on the surface. Every close up makes you a little bit sick. The atmosphere in this book is chilling, invoking the base animalism of human nature, yet warm and familiar at times. “Southern Bastards” precisely captures the conflicting dualism of the American South.
Aaron’s voice obviously comes from a very honest place. His characters are not caricatures, but archetypes, and he is such a strong dialogue writer and plotter that even the most despicable killers are grounded in something real and relatable. This issue in particular is very much “Earl Unchained” as he goes after the bastards that killed his acquaintance Dusty. Whether Earl is a seeker of justice, or merely an uncontrollably violent man remains to be seen, but I’m loving the journey.
What’s remarkable about this book is that Aaron and Latour aren’t necessarily telling a new story, yet their brilliantly constructed setting is what is really driving this narrative. That’s not to say it is predictable, there is plenty of mystery and intrigue here about Earl’s dad and the inner workings of Craw County. But the most interesting thing about this book is just living in this world for 24 pages.I feel gross when I read “Southern Bastards”, but I love every second of it.
With seeing Earl finally come out of his shell and a pretty effective cliffhanger to boot, there is no reason at all to stop reading “Southern Bastards” at this point. And if you haven’t read it at all yet, then this is a worthy title to add to your stack if you can manage to snag the first two. The letter column is well put together, but if you are typically a trade-waiter, you really won’t be missing anything. If you think the south is scary, I think you’ll be moved by this book.
Epic Switzer AKA Eric is an aspiring filmmaker and screenplay writer living in Los Angeles. His work tends to focus on the lighter side of entropy, dystopic futures, and man’s innate struggle with his own mortality. He can be found on twitter @epicswitzer or reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.