CROSSED VOL.1 - ISSUE #0 - #9 (2008 - 2010)

Written by: Richard Taylor.

What began as a 10 part original series eventually spawned into a multiple covered and numerous expanded arc story lines and books.  The Cross has turned into its own twisted and demented comic universe.  Garth Ennis had no intentions of writing any more story lines and wanted his original story line left alone.  He did however pass the torch for other Crossed series to be created and thus the carnage continued.  Hailed by many as the most violent, bloody and perverse comic ever made by many fans.  Crossed has gained infamy in comic circles and acquired fans of horror and gore from all around the world.  The question is, will they make a movie or a series and how crazy will they make it because the books are so over the top its unreal.  
Creators Ennis and Jacen Burrows figured out a formula to make this comic the epitome of all brutality and remorselessness and I think this is why it has become so popular.  By taking a worn out formula such as infected humans and the end of the world which follows in the well trodden excursions of every zombie virus movie/book/TV show production to date they have added a hardened only the strongest survive mentality unmatched by no other.  The Walking Dead is now famous and those books did extremely well by adding high dramatic elements and characters to its story lines along with graphic violence and the added suspense of main characters getting killed off.

Crossed has upped the ante by taking a story line similar to ones we've heard and seen before by following the end of the world, an unknown virus has taken a hold of people and transformed them into crazed killing maniacs. They have this insane look in their eyes and are adorned with this red branded cross on their faces. The crossed are unlike any zombie or infected killer because they are extremely chatty and spew forth vile sexually perverted slurs, they are still human because they still think and scheme and plot plus they have the ability to get organized and like human factions they have leaders.  Their mission is similar to the undead in that they relish in killing humans.  The difference is they don't only kill them, they sexually mutilate and torture them in extremely gruesome and over the top fashion.

In this 10 part original series we follow a group of survivors who wander aimlessly barely surviving as they are stalked by The Crossed at every turn.  The existence is mundane and pointless and most succumb but not before a bunch of harsh decisions are made which make the survivors just as much monsters as The Crossed themselves.  We get lots of information on different events all over the world such as the detonation of nukes, the downfall of the military and a mission to shut down the nuclear reactors before they fall into Crossed hands. Crossed is merciless and seems to pride itself in this by being shocking and absolutely  jaw dropping  in particular fashion where no children or families are spared, The Crossed commit acts of extreme sexual degradation and seem to pride themselves in it as they seemingly penetrate any hole in any species of living creature and what it makes it all the more disturbing is that they relish it to the fullest.  What made zombies ineffective was their lifelessness and casual hunger but The Crossed are highly aware and get off on pain and they vocalize how much they love it, this is what makes this series so disturbing I believe.

This series is definitely ground breaking in the comic world and leaves a lot of other so called extreme horror books in the dust.  Garth Ennis writes the savagery and  Jacen Burrows makes it come to life on the pages with a vivid, sick and graphic detail.  This original story line is by far the best in the series but the ones to follow don't disappoint either as they dive into even more gore and sex filled taboos.  I thought I had seen violence in my early comic collecting days with Lobo, Preacher, The Walking Dead and so on but Crossed is here and is mind fucking a new generation without mercy.  Like it says "There is no help.  There is no hope. There is no escape. There is only The Crossed." and this phrase sums up exactly what goes on in the comics to a fucking tee.

Rating: 5 out of 5

Crossed Vol.1
Issue #0 - #9

Released by: Avatar Press
Published in: September 2008 - March 2010
Created by: Garth Ennis, Jacen Burrows
Written by: Garth Ennis
Drawn by: Jacen Burrows
Editor in chief/publisher - William Christensen

Homepage: http://www.crossedcomic.com/