GRAPHIC NOVELS

Powers: Bureau

Michael Avon Oeming (illus.). Vol. 1. Icon. 2014. 168p. ISBN 9780785166023. pap. $19.99. CRIME SUPERHERO
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The latest chapter in Bendis (Mighty Avengers) and Oeming's (Catwoman) Eisner Award-winning series brings big changes in the aftermath of the Battle of Chicago (Powers: Gods). With all powers-related cases now falling under federal jurisdiction, Christian Walker finds himself recruited by the FBI. His first assignment, alongside his old partner Deena Pilgrim, is the infiltration of an underworld operation dealing in trafficking powers babies. With their star witness murdered and Walker's cover blown, the feds race to take down the organization before it can take out their newest agent. The pacing is spot-on, fast but not rushed, and Bendis's gritty, creatively vulgar dialog is hard-hitting without crossing the line into satire.
VERDICT Another interesting twist for a series that prides itself on stretching the boundaries of both the superhero and police procedural genres. Highly recommended for mature fans of Watchmen, Astro City, or even Ed McBain.

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