Richard Stark’s Parker: The Score

Richard Stark’s Parker: The ScoreFresh From His Eisner Award Winning Efforts On The Hunter And The Outfit, Darwyn Cooke Now Sets His Steely Sights On The Score, The Classic Richard Stark Parker Novel From 1964 Parker Becomes Embroiled In A Plot With A Dozen Partners In Crime To Pull Off What Might Be The Ultimate Heist Robbing An Entire Town Everything Was Going Fine For A While, And Then Things Got Bad Considered One Of The Best In The Parker Series, The Score Is The Perfect Vehicle For Darwyn Cooke To Pull Out All The Stops And Let Loose With A Book That Has All The Impact Of A Brutal Kick To The Solar Plexus A friend of mine is constantly talking about Richard Stark s PARKER, so when I saw a bunch of these graphic novels at the comic shop, I grabbed one at random to see what it was all about.Darwyn Cooke is a fantastic writer, and while I can t say what kind of job he does translating Stark s work because I haven t read the source material , I can say that, objectively, he doe
When we ve hit a point where Hollywood thinks that Jason Statham would be the perfect guy to play Parker in a movie, maybe it s best that we all just stick to Darwyn Cooke s graphic novel adaptations of the Richard Stark books to get our visuals of what the professional thief s stories would look like.This one adapts The Score in which Parker puts together a crew to take over and loot a small isolated mining town As he did in his versions of The Hunter and The Outfit Cooke uses the text from the book along with his artwork to tell the story, and as with the other ones, he does a first rate job of it.This one has a black and yellow color scheme with that retro style that fits the Parker stories perfectly Cooke also incorporates clever touches like showing us a map where each character is during the takeover of the town Particularly nice is how he draws scenes t
I read this last night while also watching the Olympics with my family, which makes for a really funny juxtaposition, since the Olympics is all sentimental storytelling, rooted in the back stories of all the largely American participants if you are watching it as I am, in the U S , and Richard Stark s one pseudonym for Mystery Writers of America Grand Master Donald Westlake Parker is the hardest boiled detective you ever met, the opposite of sentimental Westlake adapted Jim Thompson s novel The Grifters into an academy award winning screenplay, so if you ve seen the film you know the territory, though Parker s world has even less sense of humor Parker never smiles once And of course, the ladies are attracted to him even if one of them calls him ugly.This is the third in the Parker series adapted beautifully by Darwin Cooke, in retro sixties art and color, very hip and lean and mean The story is of a score, the biggest and most improbable one Parker a lifetime criminal, a thief ever did, taking a town at night, with an outfit of twelve wise guys In the two previous books, everything went perfectly In this one, mistakes are made, and Parker knows it from the begin
Every single time I put down one of Darwyn Cooke s Richard Stark adaptations, I tell myself, Man, I really need to read those Parker books Not only do they come with solid recommendations from many of my trusted friends, they re right up my alley Disgruntled con man with some serious anger issues Give me all the books.Parker s general rule states that if a job needs than five people, it s not a job So imagine his reaction when someone proposed a heist requiring than twenty five bodies Scaling things down to a modest twelve crooks, Parker joins in with a rag tag group of criminals recruited by a mysterious newbie, Edgars, with a plan to rob an entire town Edgars is upfront about his displeasure with the quarry city and makes it known that the job has a lot to do with personal reasons another red flag for Parker Parker admits that he s in need of a challenge and with a take of this size roughly a quarter of a million it s hard to say no.I often wonder how objective I would be with the material if I had read the original books I can t attest to how accurate the adaptations are, all I can say is how much fun they are to read The artwork is gorgeous and the colors, while subdued, find a way to do so much with va
I m the perfect audience for these books as I ve never read a Richard Stark Donald Westlake novel about Parker but I love Darwyn Cooke, I like crime stories and looooove comics, so mixing all that up and serving it to me is gravy every time I will read a Parker novel by Westlake one day but for now, The Hunter, The Outfit, and this one, The Score are perfectly enjoyable by themselves Parker is his usual tough guy self as he gets drawn into a scheme to rob an entire town, a small mining town in the middle of nowhere, in a single night He assembles a team of expert thieves to assist in the raid and they plan meticulously but of course things don t go according to plan, neither are they what they seem My favourite book of the series so far is The Outfit though The Score is a close runner up and it s told in a straightforward way, unlike The Outfit which made great use of various comics styles to tell the story The Score is also the first Parker book where thing have gone wrong in previous titles, Parker and co have made a plan and pulled it off perfectly Here, Parker finally encounters trouble and has to deal with complications as they arise, leading to a tense and exciting story overall The one criticism I would have is how few people the crew encount
The Cooke Westlake a.k.a Stark teaming returns to the spirit, quality and effectiveness shown in the initial volume The Hunter with their third book The Score The sopho effort, The Outfit, was good but sort of lost its momentum for awhile in the middle This time laconic thief Parker works with a l
This is an adaptation of one of my favorite Parker novels, and Darwyn Cooke doesn t disappoint He has a great sense of pacing Too many comic book writers seem to assume that people spend as much time on the visuals as they do the dialogue, which leads to some choppy pacing For this book, though, Cooke intersperses dialogue sections with speech free action sections, and it really works He also wonderfully evokes the 60s setting of the original novel without being cutesy or o
Darwyn Cooke s previous adaptations of Richard Stark s Parker novels The Hunter The Outfit were faithful to the source material Cooke had even included pertinent elements of The Man With The Getaway Face in the Outfit adaptation and it was a real pleasure for me to have one of my favourite artists illustrate some of my favourite crime stories This book continues the trend What initially struck me was the choice of colour for the art In the previous volumes, we had black white art with a third colour used for shading The Hunter had a dark bluish green, and The Outfit had purple This book uses a bright orange But guess what it works.Like in the first two adaptations by Cooke, there are
Not nearly as good as Darwyn Cooke s adaptations of the Parker novels The Hunter and The Score It was just as skillfully adapted as a graphic novel, with a sparse monochromatic but propulsive drawing and minimalist writing I think, without having read it directly, that the problem is the plot of the underlying novel it is adapting The Hunter and The Outfit both have a higher level of double crossing, varied settings, and an almost epic struggle of Parker as a solo criminal against The Outfit as a wide ranging organization with tentacles in everything In contrast, The Score is of a standard caper story as Parker is presented with an idea for a score, assembles a crew, procures weapons, cases the site, moves in, it goes partly wrong, and then they leave and hideout Nothing , nothing less.I just re read my r
Darwyn Cooke continues adapting Donald E Westlake s Parker series into graphic novel form with THE SCORE, the third volume in the series And like the first two, it s wonderful, with a terse script and evocative artwork that captures the mid Sixties era perfectly This is the one where Parker and a crew that includes Alan Grofield try to loot an entire