If the opening issue of Southern Bastards was a gain of six on first down, this second issue was converting that second and four into a solid gain of twelve yards, thus gaining another first down and keeping this reading drive full steam ahead. Silly football analogies aside, the second issue of Southern Bastards was an enjoyable read once again.
I can’t go through this review without acknowledging the fantastic artwork once again. Jason Latour (artist) keeps up the gritty onslaught of the chaotic art he presents in this series. It has an unrefined detail to it that just begs to continue to be looked at long after you finished reading the words on the page. My favorite panel has to be a close-up of the opposing team’s quarterback getting sacked (finally some football) and his mouthpiece flying out as he yells out in agony. It’s simplistic—almost childish—but perfectly captures how the quarterback is feeling in that very moment. I could celebrate the art in Southern Bastards in every single review, but that wouldn’t be necessary. Just understand, if Latour remains the artist for the entire series, we can expect quality work every issue.
First off, Yes! There is finally some football action. And while it only lasted for a short time and served as the background for an important revelation, it was fun to see how it was portrayed in the comic. It was surprisingly well done and I look forward to seeing more football games going forward.
The story took some unexpected twists with this second issue, especially with the character of Dusty. After reading the first issue, I thought Earl Tubbs and Dusty would contrast each other well but now it is looking like a totally different ball game after this second issue. This issue is a deeper dive into the character of Earl Tubbs. Slowly, it begins to pull back the mystery of who this man is. At the core of Tubbs is a man with significant father issues. There isn’t a clear indication to what caused the resentment Tubbs feels about his deceased father but it is felt with every word Tubbs says at his daddy’s grave. Tubbs even went far enough to fight in Vietnam to escape from his father and as Tubbs’ put it, “Still standin’ in your Goddamn shadow.”
A vital character to this issue was the head football coach, COACH BOSS. While not getting much information on him as a character, Coach Boss feels important to the story as a whole. Upon reading, I felt as if he controls most aspects of town from the background, having this feeling that most people do his bidding for him as to not get his hands dirty. Coach Boss could easily be the main antagonist for this series and it would be entertaining to see Tubbs and Boss go at each other.