The Vinyl Underground: Watching the Detectives by Si Spencer, Simon Gane, and Cameron Stewart
A fast-paced, ultra-cool ongoing crime-noir series, The Vinyl Underground is led by Morrison Shepherd, a D-list celebrity darling, soul DJ, and son of an ex-footballer. Fresh out of prison and off a nasty coke habit, Morrison is joined by a fellow ex-con named Perv, whose seizures give him clues to crimes long before the cops, and Leah, a gorgeous morgue assistant who leads a double life online and represents the brawn of the team.
Morrison’s ex-flame Abi is reluctantly forced to join the team when her father is implicated for murder. A young boy’s head (with diamonds in the eye sockets) washes up on the edge of the Thames and seems to be connected to a series of ritual killings, a drug called Khat, and Muti magic. Can they get to the bottom of it?
I think I may have written down The Vinyl Underground somewhere, connecting it, due, quite shallowly, to its nationality, with Phonogram, another series I very much want to read. I’m normally not one for paranormal investigation—I gave the first two episodes of Supernatural a chance and then gave up on it—but I kind of trust Vertigo. Plus, it only ran for twelve issues, which means it’s not a huge time investment if it goes south. These are the things I think about when sinking time into long-form stories, folks.
Paolo at Sputnik! enjoyed it, although he points out that this material has been tread before and it’s all very Guy Ritchie. The gents at Comics Bulletin each found it middling. Richard George at IGN had a slightly more disappointed take on the first issue. Jess at start narrative here didn’t enjoy it, especially the handling of the female characters; I even commented on that post long ago, but I do want to witness it firsthand. (At the very least, I got a reminder to put start narrative here back in my RSS feed!)
The Vinyl Underground: Watching the Detectives was published on June 24, 2008.