By Alasdair Stuart
I'm a mark for a good cop show. The rolling, cut corner speech patterns of Homicide: Life on the Street, the curious postmodern trajectory of Detective John Munch, the flotilla of Law & Order shows, I'm fond of all of them, the weirder the better. This means two things; firstly, in a few weeks I'll be binge watching True Detective. Secondly, I really enjoyed The Fuse issue 2 and here are three reasons why, all of them tied to my deep abiding love for slightly eccentric cop shows.
Dietrich's quiet, precise, slightly unsettling approach to the job gets the tiniest hint of an origin here. He's a big city cop who's moved to the new frontier, and, whilst the reasons why aren't clear, his methods are. Dietrich isn't so much by the book as he is of the system and one of the book's major dramatic engines looks to be what happens when he finds himself outside that system.
2. Thinking It Through
This is glorious. The entire scene's great but this is the moment where suddenly, the two cops click. There's no great emotional blowout, no fight, just two very highly trained people finally starting to think the same way. The quickfire exchange of ideas, the case being built out of these two people's brains, is an absolute joy to read.
3. The Ristovych Effect
Dietrich may be running from something, but Klem is definitely not looking something in her past in the eye. It'll be a while before we get to the event that got her this notoriety I suspect, but the journey, and the clues, are already very good fun.
4. Let's Not Mess With Detective Rystovych Today
I love this for how unexpected it is. After an issue and a half of being the robopitbull of justice, Dietrich positively skips over the line with his partner, realizes it and backs off very, very fast. It's a welcome comedy moment in an increasingly tense book and speaks to the deductive moment mentioned above. These two cops are starting to understand each other, and that makes them both powerful and very dangerous to the wrong people.
Also, this issue is, like the first, being overprinted. The idea is to get the book into reader's hands as fast as possible, and encourage retailers to re-order, safe in the knowledge the stock's there. And stock in this instance, means a reprint of issue 1 (That was also overprinted and STILL sold through a in a week). The second printing of issue 1 is on deck for April 2nd, so anyone curious about the book can, and should, pick this up now, and the issue 1 reprint then. It's great work and now's the perfect time to pick it up.
Alasdair Stuart is a freelance journalist who lists John Munch, Henry Rollins and Ford Prefect amongst his pantheon of heroes. He blogs at www.alasdairstuart.com, podcasts at www.pseudopod,org and escapepod.org and is on twitter at @www.twitter.com/AlasdairStuart