‘Murder Inc. Volume 1: Valentine’s Trust’ TPB (review)

Written by Brian Michael Bendis
Illustrated by Michael Avon Oeming
Published by Dark Horse Comics

“If I couldn’t rule it, I would destroy it.”–Nicky Barnes

During the 1970s, Nicky Barnes and his well groomed gangsters ruled New York City.

At the height of his power, Barnes was even a rival of the Five Families, Gambino, Lucchese, Genovese Bonanno and Colombo families.

During this period, Barnes and the Five Families ruled New York City with an iron fist.

From the mayor’s office, the police department and the commoner on the street knew that New York’s real power brokers were its powerful underworld figures.

According to the documentary Mr. Untouchable, the Nicky Barnes story, what broke organized crime’s grip on New York was President Carter’s warning that Nicky Barnes needed to be shot. Nicky, a ruthless man of his word, swore the terms of the word, and once imprisoned, he tore down his organization and the Five Families.

At Bendis and Oeming Murder Inc. Volume One: Valentine’s Trust, readers find themselves in a New York City where, like Nicky Barnes, has never fallen.

By association, the Five Families continued to prosper, eventually extending their tendril far beyond the confines of New York and becoming the de facto rulers of the United States, grappling with an uneasy alliance with the nation’s Democratic elected officials.

Final rating: 5 out of 5 stars


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