I got hooked on David Lapham's crime noir series Stray Bullets the first time I picked up one of the original trade paperback collections. I kept picking them up periodically, but it was a long time before I got to read Vol. 1, and I never found a copy of Vol. 7. The original trades ended with Vol. 8 (at issue #32), which left issues #33-40 uncollected. Not only that, but issue #41, which ended the original run of the series, was delayed when the entire series went on hiatus.

The Über Alles Edition, which collects all of the issues from #1 - 41, fills in all the gaps. I was about to read the issues I missed, but realized that I had read some of the earlier collections out of order--and it had been a long time since I read the last one. So I'm starting from the beginning, and thought it might be interesting to record my impressions as I went.

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Oh, nice! I'd never heard that joke -- the first time I heard the knife/gun fight reference was Untouchables. 

Just read issue 18, "Sex and Violence Part 2" -- an Amy Racecar story that's Virginia Applejack's reaction to the her getting trapped in the suburban kink house in "Sex & Violence Part 1." It slowly shifts from a straight-up Chandler pastiche to a sendup of the private eye genre as a whole, with a ludicrously byzantine plot (best illustrated by a driving scene in which she recaps the plot to her partner, and her overstuffed word balloons pretty much push the art off the page), and ends in with a secret plot behind the plot -- all the sex behind the violence.  

I read the next couple of issues (2 and 3) a few nights ago, but never reported. While there isn't much new to say, I thought they both followed the very horrific sad parts of humanity in the same distorted paths that their lives were already very likely to take. I will have more words for the next issue or two, but I wanted to chime in that I hadn't strayed off of the Bullets path again.

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