In response to the rising crime rate and frequent gang violence, the authorities in the Indian city of Mumbai took the unprecedented step of empowering a band of elite cops to apprehend and execute notofious wanted criminals. What followed was a series of extra-judicial slayings without warrants or due process. The paperwork for these was filed as false ENCOUNTERS. Thus, the select band of policemen acquired the moniker of the ENCOUNTER COPS of Mumbai.
To Love and Die in Child Birth
This second issue of the series takes us in rewind, it’s 5 years before the events that play out in the first book and our anti-hero, Arjun Kadam is already on the downward path we found him on last issue. He’s living a double life, lying to his wife, lying to society, both in the vein of “what we don’t know can’t hurt us”. That’s never quite true though is it…
From a technical standpoint, the writing feels much more solid this time out and compared to the first issue the dialog is clearer, more coherent, and overall more compelling. Issue one was the setup and not much happened. Issue two begins to answer some of the queries that come up and does so in cinematic fashion.
As alluded to earlier, we’re introduced to Kadam’s personal life and work life. We start to get a broader picture of where the puzzle pieces go, but not so many pieces that we aren’t left still asking more questions. We’ve got a few more issues to go still. We get a slightly less opaque painting of who our anti-hero is through the eyes of his family and co-workers and we begin to understand where his mind is as we lead into the events of the opening book. Saurav, the book’s author is beginning to relax and stretch his writing muscles and the story is visibly benefiting from his comfort.
Vivek Shinde returns to art duties and continues his streak of excellent work on this series. I had no complaints about his work on the last book and there’s nothing much to add on this book. Actually, he brings it even harder for this issue and the end product is all the more improved for it.
Overall, a great second issue and here’s to hoping the future books keep up this level of quality. Job well done.
B+ grade for plot and narrative
A grade for artwork
Overall a solid B+ grade for better story and continuation of the great quality art from the first book.