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REVIEW: Noir Is The New Black


REVIEW: Noir Is The New Black

Book Title: Noir Is The New Black: Noir Stories From Black Creators

Book Description: An anthology of stories from black creators with “Noir” elements. It features a great mix of some of the best black talent working in comics today. With 40 different stories that run the gamut of topics and approaches to the concept of “Noir”.

Book Author: Multiple

Book Format: Paperback

Publisher - Orgnization: Fair Square Comics

Publisher Logo:

Illustrator: Multiple

  • Story
  • Interior Art
  • Cover Art
  • Dialogue
  • Mechanics
  • Editing


Noir Is The New Black is a great appetizer of stories with elements of Noir style. The art is above average, with multiple entries in this anthology making you want more. Most of the book isn’t traditional Noir stories, but it is a great sample of the work these creatives are doing in the realm of comic books.

This collection, curated by Fabrice Sapolsky with TC Harris, runs the gamut of topics and styles, from classic noir to afro-futurism; all enjoyable. Multiple stories left me wanting more, especially “Vera’s List,” “Hart of the Matter,” and “The Circuit.” There is no deadweight, though.

The cover art is effective at giving the feel of what you would expect from “Noir.” Nothing extraordinary but very efficient. And if you pick it up, there is no question about what you’re about to read.

The art is consistently good. The artists use unique styles that aid in bringing these diverse tales to fruition. Nothing clunky or out of place. Overall, a very good job at visually telling the stories in a way that makes sense.

The dialogue throughout worked as well. The writers used the limited number of pages they had to build compelling characters and interesting situations. I’m hoping to see full-length versions made of many of these tales.

The mechanics of the stories overall were above average. Some seem more like excerpts than complete works. “Hart of the Matter,” written by David Walker, is the most comprehensive work. It fits nicely in the “Noir” tradition and tells a tale the builds up tension all the way to a satisfying and definitive end. An end that feels complete.

The editing was good. The biggest editorial distraction, though, was in the best story. “Hart of the Matter” has a panel where a sound effect is placed over a word bubble making it unreadable. Other than that error, nothing else stands out throughout the whole book.

This is a well-put-together anthology that explores “Noir” from the eyes of black creatives. The diverse storytelling showcases black talent in a way that exposes as it celebrates not only “noir” but the work and perspectives of writers and artists you may not have been aware of. A great addition to anyone’s collection.

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I'm an indie rapper, writer, and founder of Flock Rebel, a lifestyle and clothing brand. I grew up in Southern California, reading, rapping, and writing every chance I got. The passion it takes to create inspires me. I'm always excited to discover great art, and I love sharing amazing things.

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