If you’ve ever watched The Raid and thought it could use some jokes, have I got a comic for you. Kill Them All from Kyle Starks blends your favorite ’90s action movies together with a heaping helping of comedy to tell one insane story. On one side, you’ve got disgraced police detective Iruka who is searching for a way to get back on the force so he can kick some ass. On the other is Tiger’s daughter, an assassin who has been betrayed by her boyfriend and employer and now she’s seeking revenge. The two of them end up with the same idea to take down the mob boss in town holed up in his ivory tower.
Kill Them All is relentlessly funny. It is a non-stop joke machine that will keep a smile permanently emblazoned on your face for the entire time you’re reading it. Starks’ humor is a perfect fit for the story, poking fun at action movie tropes while also doing them justice. It’s not insulting the genre. Instead, it takes the best aspects of it and adds a hilarious spin on it.
Even the characters recognize what a crazy and fun world they live in, especially Iruka. He has this wide-eyed excitement for almost everything he does. You can’t help but get swept up in it. This is a man that eats, sleeps, and breathes justice and now he gets a chance to dispense it once again. It’s a good thing he’s got a trunk full of guns and weapons.
Starks’ artwork matches the comedic tone of the story. I mean, that makes sense as he wrote and drew the book, right? His style has a cartoony flare that is so enjoyable. I would love to see this adapted into a cartoon using Starks’ style. It would be a perfect Adult Swim show.
The panel layout is varied throughout Kill Them All. Starks guides you through the story, focusing on key details in smaller panels and then pulling back to show absolutely insane action sequences in others. The fights are always entertaining and get increasingly crazy as the story progresses. You’ve got punches, kicks, and backflips at a minimum, but then you’ve got dismemberments, head explosions, and middle fingers to the eye. That’s just skimming the surface of what’s in store.
There are a number of running gags in Kill Them All that go on to pay dividends. They serve as great callbacks. I wouldn’t necessarily call them comic relief because the book never stops being funny. Starks ties this story up in a neat little bow, pulling in every single plot thread, yet somehow also leaves things open enough to do a sequel. Please do a sequel.
Kill Them All has everything I want from a comic: Great story, beautiful artwork, tons of action, and a huge helping of humor. It is laugh-out-loud funny. If you are not laughing while reading this comic, there might be something wrong with you. It also has the most unique method of shooting a gun I’ve ever seen. I’m not going to spoil it here, but suffice it to say that it’s pretty impressive and definitely badass.