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on 5 October 2001
Hitman is,well, about a Hitman. When young Tommy finds himself being given superpowers (in a way so perverted that you'll have to read the thing to find out) he doesn't do anything stupid like wear his underpants on top of his jeans or don a cape. No, instead he uses his telepathy and x-ray vision to do what anyone of us would do - to make life easier, to cheat at cards and of course to see women naked. Oh yes, and to kill his victims easier. We all know that power corrupts, but what happens when the person is already corrupted? Tommy is a hitman. He kills people with his guns and isnt about to start a new career just because he has superpowers. It's as simple as that. Or at least it should. This is a Garth Ennis creation and nothing is simple in his world. Thus our new 'super-assassin' finds himself up against demons, freaks, gang bosses, ninjas and a certain superhero called 'Batman' (who ends up covered in Tommy's vomit.
Funny, clever and far too warped to be good for you, Hitman is one comic that everyone should read. You'll laugh. You'll cry. You'll realise how much of an idiot Batman truly is. A very cool comic.
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In 30 years of reading comic books Ive come accross alot of great stuff however Garth Ennis 60-issue (plus annuals/specials etc) run on DC's 'Hitman' sits at the top of my list of favourite comics by a country mile.

Tommy Monaghan is like the title suggests a hitman - he kills people for money. The difference between Tommy and other hitmen however is that he only kills 'bad guys'. Its these morals and his tendency to bet on the local baseball team that have probably lead to Tommy being pretty much flat broke and directionless.

After being bitten by an alien during DC's 'Bloodlines' story arc Tommy receives the duel powers of x-ray vision and telepathy. Rather than become a superhero Tommy decides to reinvent himself as the hitman for the strange and unusal jobs. Raioactive Father Christmas killing innocents? Dinosaurs running riot through Gotham? Darkseid take a dump in your toilet? Call the Hitman.

Other than work Tommy tends to abuse his powers like any other normal joe would. (he once pretended to apply for membership to the JLA simply so he could check Wonder Woman out with his X-ray vision!)

Along with the other patrons of his surrogate uncles Seans bar - 'Noonans Sleazy bar' - such as the ice cold Ringo Chen, Seans son Pat Noonan, the hopeless (and possibly retarded) gentle giant Hacken, the alcoholic wannabe-superhero Sixpac an his best bud Natt 'the hat' Walls - Tommy takes on the jobs that other assassains cant or wont touch.

This first volume covers Tommy's origins (first seen in Garth Ennis run on 'The Demon') and also the story 'Hells Hitman' where the Lords of the gun - the Arkannon - attempt to recruit Tommy to be their own personal killer. Throw in a chance encounter with Batman which, thanks to a bad batch of Indian food in an attempt to woo a pretty lady , goes from bad to worse and gives the Dark Knight a very special reason to want to take Tommy down, and you have the beginning of what I consider the best 'buddy' book of all time - a book thats ultimately about friendship, loyalty and love between a very disfunctional and unusual bunch of killers.

Whilst no where near as high-brow as 'Preacher' or as visceral as 'The Boys', 'Hitman' is the book which writer Garth Ennis went on record to say ended sooner than he wished and that the guys in this book were like his friends and he misses them everyday.

If my recommendation isnt enough to make you pick up this volume - and the rest of them - then perhaps that is.
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on 15 July 2001
People who are looking for a second Preacher, this is not it. This book (which collects Hitman #1-3, Demon annual #2 and Batman Chronicles #4) is the first collection of a far more uncomplicated title, but therefore not any less fun, and the writing-style of Ennis is very recognizable here (and that's a good thing). Uncomplicated humurous (great oneliners) action, that's the best way to describe it. Tommy Monaghan is a Hitman with a conscience (who works in Gotham) who is blessed with powers like X-ray vision, telepathy and a incredibly high skill-level. Powers he likes to "abuse" in his interaction with other people, which makes for some hilarious scenes (btw, don't be fooled by him having powers because this is definately NOT a superhero title). He is different from your regular Hitman in the fact that he only takes on contracts to assassinate meta-humans, no 'regular Joe's'. AND he must see a reason for the killing, he won't kill people who he doesn't see as 'the bad guys.' A group of demons from Hell who call themselves the 'Arkanonne' want to recruit him to be their representative on earth and send out an agent to go get him. Then Tommy gets hired to kill the Joker and he can make a million bucks with it, but he'd have to go into Arkham Asylum to do so. Meanwhile Batman is keeping an eye on the case (because he is naturally interested in everything that involves the Joker) which turns out to be something a little different from what Tommy had first expected it to be.
Like I said, this book is not as complicated as Preacher was. It doesn't really have a continuity where you have to know everything that has gone before to know what's it's about. It is an action-packed, lighthearted read about a group of Hitmen who are close friends (well some more than other) and it's filled with typical Ennis humor and oneliners (which work very well). The artwork of McCrea also needs to be given some credit because after reading it I can't think of anyone I would have liked to see in his place. The scenes follow up fluently and his facial expressions are really good, a very important factor in the book. So for people who want a deep, complicated story where you need to notice everything to see what's going on, this is not the best choice for you. For people who like Ennis' sense of bizar humor, oneliners and a lot of blood-and-guts packed action this would be more than welcome. One of MY favorite series at least.
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on 2 December 2000
HITMAN, i often heard about the title, but never really felt the need to pick it up. But after Preacher finished it's GREAT run, i felt empty. I am a big comic-reader so there is always something for me to read, but i wanted something a bit more adult like. Something with a bit more violence, but also with good humour. Suddenly i remembered this title. HITMAN, by Garth Ennis, the fantastic writer of Preacher and Punisher. I thought i'd try this one out, and now i'm hooked. Hitman is perfect for people who want violence, but not as graphic as in Preacher, and people who like black humour. Well this book is full of both. It starts with Hitman's first appearance in the DCU, and you really get to know him in those few issues this book contains. I can really recommend this book for everyone who loves violence and humour, this book probably will make you laugh out loud. Hitman is the first person ever, who throws up over BATMAN. But be warned, once you've read this book, you'll probably want more!!! just like i did.
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on 5 August 2009
Collects the first few issues of Ennis and Mc Crea's bloody brilliant Hitman Series, easily one of the funniest, coolest and goddamn HEARTBREAKING comic books of all time.. When you finish that last issue you'll feel like you've just taken a bullet yourself.
Imagine STATE OF GRACE crossed with HARD-BOILED with the humor of EVIL DEAD and you're halfway there. As a certain perverted spanish superhero would say; "Bueno... EXCELLENTE!"
ANd D.C?
Put it all out in Trade already!
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on 20 August 2009
Despite a new cover and title, this is identical to the original "Hitman" published by Titan books in 1997! A bit of a con!
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