Richard Stark’s Parker: The Outfit
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Richard Stark’s Parker: The Outfit (Parker Graphic Novels #2)

4.29 of 5 stars 4.29  ·  rating details  ·  2,296 ratings  ·  143 reviews
After he evens the score with those who betrayed him and recovers the money he was cheated out of from the syndicate, Parker is riding high. Until, that is, he's fingered by a squealer who rats him out to The Outfit for the price they put on his head.
Hardcover, 157 pages
Published October 6th 2010 by IDW Publishing (first published October 5th 2010)
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As a fan of the Parker series and comic books, these adaptations are right in my wheelhouse, but what I find most intriguing about them is the clever ways that Darwyn Cooke has used to tell a text story into a more visual form while staying true to the spirit of the original books.

The Outfit was the third book in the Parker series, but this one also adapts the second novel, The Man With Getaway Face, into part of this story, too. Parker pissed off the Outfit and even though he’s gotten plastic s...more
Having read many of the Parker novels im hugely impressed by how Cooke adds a new dimension to the stories with his artwork,the way he narrates,uses two novels The Outfit,The Man with the Getaway Face into one Graphic Novel.

Cooke’s art has never been better the inking,the coloring,the use of shadows. Every page with Parker himself is priceless because he got Parkers look,movement so well. I just stared in awe in how great Parker looked. How he can be retro,cartooney art style and still draw hard...more
Lars Guthrie
Darwyn Cooke decisively scored with his first comic book adaption of the Richard Stark ‘Parker’ novels: ‘The Hunter.’ ‘The Outfit’ doesn’t deliver the same bold punch. That might be expected from a sequel, and because the story line is not as hard-hitting or straightforward.

Cooke’s choice of palette is an indicator of a more workman-like delivery. There’s still just one color other than black and white, but where it was crackling cyan in ‘The Hunter,’ ‘The Outfit’ is tinted with a more muted bl...more
Parker had evened the score with the Outfit, or so he thought. After extensive facial reconstruction surgery, Parker is identified by a squealer, outing him to his enemies. Parker realizes that the fight isn't yet over and he intends to finish it!

So, while I did like this book, I wasn't into it as much as The Hunter. Cooke seemed to take the story in a few directions towards the end, tying up loose ends and telling other parts in a different format. By throwing in a magazine style layout as well...more
Book 2 Of Darwyn Cooke's graphic novels based on Donald Westlake's, aka Richard Stark, Parker books is The Outfit. This story picks up not to long after the first story, The Hunter, had ended and it continues the story of Parker's run in with the Outfit. Parker has gone back to his life of resorts and rich women after he had gotten plastic surgery to change his looks when an Outfit hit man tries to take him out. This sets off a series of things as Parker has to "convince" the Outfit to leave him...more
Jan 10, 2012 Ed rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: hardboiled crime fans/graphic novels
Probably as interesting as the first graphic novel, this second one didn't leave me disappointed. Lots of cool 1960s decor and vibes are found in the cartoon panels. Remember the Esso signs? The graphic novel Parker fits my idea of the literal one from the Stark novels. The pages of text toward the middle slow down the story a little. Enjoyable enough.
Sam Quixote
This is the second of Darwyn Cooke’s comic book adaptations of Richard Stark’s Parker novels with this one using material from the novels “The Outfit” and “The Man with the Getaway Face”. After Parker walks off with a hefty chunk of change from the Outfit (a crime syndicate) at the end of the first book The Hunter, a price is put on his head as Parker heads south to enjoy his earnings in the lap of luxury. But even after altering his face with plastic surgery, he’s spotted and the Outfit are ale...more
Nov 20, 2010 Erik added it
Although not as sleek in narrative as his previous Parker outing, The Hunter, Cooke’s second Parker graphic novel rewards the reader who pays close attention to his multitude of characters, their frequently surprising duplicity, and a narrative structure that likes to double-back at times – and not to mention his use of several different narrative forms -- like the magazine article -- to further develop his plot. (The last time I recall this being used most effectively was in the additional mate...more
Ward Jenkins
The continuing saga of Parker is another classic. Darwyn Cooke continues to cook with his excellent draftsmanship, gorgeous layouts, luscious character design, you name it. Cooke does a pretty decent job in recreating the look and feel of that mid-century era, too, while at the same time putting his own spin on it. I found it fascinating that he shows several heist jobs through a seedy, pulp crime magazine implemented into the comic format. Here, the jobs are depicted through various styles, fro...more
Fábio Fernandes
I'm a big fan of Donald Westlake and his alter-ego, Richard Stark. I was just rereading one of his books when I found out this series of graphic novels by Darwyn Cooke, of whom I am also a huge fan because of his work in DC's The New Frontier.

Cooke is not a realistic artist - so what? IMO, he manages to make Parker and his brutality all the more real in his cartoonish-ness (not to mention the femmes fatales he finds along the way, who are as beautiful and intriguing as any real flesh-and-blood...more
I read these in a fun voice in my head that goes well with the story and art. Sorry I can't let you hear inside my head.
Steve Banes
Amazing follow-up to his equally brilliant adaptation of "The Hunter", Darywn is seriously redefining what can be done with the crime comic. Visually and violently stunning, if you've never read a comic book or any of Donald Westlake's (aka Richard Stark) books, then this is definitely a good place to start. I finished it in one evening, and then stayed awake all night thinking about it.
I don't read much hardboiled crime fiction, but this is a very nicely adapted graphic version of a novel by Richard Stark. The artwork is very evocative of the early 1960's setting, and the story held my interest. The variety of styles used to relate the mini-narratives within the story were especially effective.
The Outfit is not only another great comic adaptation of Richard Stark’s Parker novels, but also an illustrated guide on how to set up illegal money making schemes. And as an added bonus, it clearly and concisely lays out how to rob those aforementioned operations if you felt so inclined.
Classic noir in the rich tradition of Chandler and MacDonald. Stark was a prolific writer of noir novels, the Parker series being his most known creation. Here artist Darwyn Cooke brings this dark, but simple tale to life with his imaginative illustrations. The color palette is mostly blue, black and grey - to fit the theme, I suppose. The story is relatively easy to follow: Parker is seeking revenge on the Outfit for daring to take a hit out on him and goes on a robbing/killing spree that ends...more
When one of my favorite comic creators adapts the work of my favorite crime writer of all time- of course I'm going to read it. And of course I'm going to like it a lot. Brilliant work as usual.
A beautifully-drawn graphic novel based on Donald Westlake's Parker books. Unlike many graphic novels, it has sections of text interspersed with dialogue-free watercolour artwork. The art style is watercolour brushstrokes and reminds me of calligraphy. It's beautiful, but occasionally confusing in the sections with no dialogue. I'd read Firebreak by Westlake, and always felt there was something *missing* from the story. Seeing the graphic novel adaptations (Hunter and The Outfit), my problem is...more
Nick Kives
I enjoy these book a lot. The old school art style works perfectly for the story.
Oscar Salas
Aunque la trama resulta mas simple que en el primer volumen, Cooke tiene el sentido común de aprovechar el espacio para experimentar con el lenguaje narrativo. Enriquece ciertamente la experiencia, da un salto en sus capacidades narrativas (¿tiene techo este hombre?) y por sobre todo se llena de referencias a la época y al género mediante mucho mas que citas. Mezclando el audiovisual con la publicidad y el cartoon, Cooke logra que el segundo volumen de su adaptación del Parker de Richard Stark s...more
This review originally appeared on my blog, Shared Universe Reviews.

In my review for Parker: the Hunter I wondered whether or not Cooke was going to let loose in his second Parker adaptation The Outfit much like Parker lets loose after a job. Having read The Outfit for the first time, I would say Cooke indeed let loose. Once again the plot is simple. Parker underwent plastic surgery to change the look of his face in order to avoid being hunted down by the Outfit (the Organization or the Syndic...more
Willem van den Oever
With a strong narrative backbone and excellent, expressive artwork, ‘Parker; The Hunter’ was a hugely enjoyable read which didn’t do Richard Stark’s original 60’s novel any harm, but rather added an equally strong layer to its story. Luckily, illustrator Darwyn Cooke didn’t stop after this first try and returns with ‘Parker; The Outfit’, combining Stark’s ‘The Outfit’ and ‘The Man with the Getaway Face’ into one book.

From the first pages onward, it’s immediately clear that none of the magic of ‘...more
Douglas Cootey
First the cons: Art was more rushed than last volume. There were far less stunning panels, or stunning women (I *love* Darwyn Cooke's women). Unless you count Madge or Alma, but they're a bit old for me. Language was occasionally coarse. Story became bogged down in the middle.

What I did like about this volume was the attention given to advertising detail from that era. City panels were strong, especially some of the splash pages. I liked how the story came together at the end. And the illustrati...more
Darrell Reimer
Darwyn Cooke's original outing with Richard Stark's Parker was a lushly rendered, graphic tour-de-force. With his second go-round, the aesthetic more or less remains, but much of the energy is gone. Part of this is due, I think, to Cooke's strict faithfulness to Stark's work. There are Parker books where the action is very physical, and moves relentlessly forward, The Hunter being one such. But there are also Parker books where most of the action is in Parker's head, as he adjusts tactics to sta...more
Darwyn Cooke is amazing. The second Parker graphic novel adaptation is even better than the first story. The noir style is amazing. Cooke is one of my favorite artist and he never fails to deliver. His simple style is beautiful and haunting at times. His style is so different than most artist. He has a classic cartoon style that screams at you.

The story was a great follow up. We catch up with Parker not to soon after the book. He's in Miami trying to put the outfit behind him when they catch up...more
Another great adaptation of the Richard Stark Parker novels by Darwyn Cooke. This one adapts two novels, and towards the last half Cooke has real fun playing with the way the story is told varying his style greatly from very cartoony to illustrated text. Very nice and unexpected.

Parker is his usual, brutal self. In this one, finding that he's still targeted by the mob, now calling itself the Outfit, Parker decides to blackmail and kill his way out of the Outfits sights. Nice touches include Par...more
After the success of Richard Stark's Parker: The Hunter, in which Darwyn Cooke adapted a classic of crime fiction for the comic book page, we're treated to this gem of a book.

First off, there were some choices to be made, story-wise, to keep the book flowing evenly while respecting the source material and not going over a certain number of pages. Before the actual "Outfit" story, Cooke included a short adaptation of Stark's The Man With The Getaway Face, in which Parker gets a new face to help r...more
Richard Stark's Parker: The Outfit by Darwyn Cooke is about a man name Parker who comes back from a job he has done in the old book. The job lead him to have many people against him so in this book he decides to get surgery done to his face. He starts off with a girl, he's a womanizer, who is dragged down with him when someone tries to kill him. Later on he teams up with a group of people for a job, the one girl in the group is trying to betray them and take the money for herself, when they soon...more
Sridhar Reddy
With THE OUTFIT, comparisons to Darwyn Cook's first installment of his Richard Stark adaptations, THE HUNTER, are inevitable, and it is these comparisons that ultimately place THE OUTFIT in a lesser light. Although it must be mentioned that THE OUTFIT is uniformly excellent.

Picking up where THE HUNTER left off, Cooke continues the hard-boiled exploits of Parker, the ruthless anti-hero who wants nothing more than to lead a life of crime in peace. Fresh off the warpath of vengeance, Parker attempt...more
Eric Kibler
Darwyn Cooke is an auteur comics creator. Therefore, one shouldn't expect his adaptation of Donald E. Westlake's Parker novels to be slavish beat-by-beat reiterations. No, Cooke makes these adaptations his own.

In this one, he includes the third Parker book, The Man With the Getaway Face, as a prologue to The Outfit, and it works. Cooke introduces an actor/thief who doesn't appear in the novels, and who serves as Parker's disguise guru. He cuts the scene where Parker travels south to get a truck....more
Walter Jon Williams thinks that Stieg Larsson fell in love with his character, Salander, which is a major problem in the later Millennium books: instead of a doomed loner against the world, he gives us a superhero grinding down mustache-twirling but incompetent villains. (Cite: That's the way I felt about Salander in book 3 and kind of the way I feel about Donald Westlake's Parker.

Parker is a man alone against the world, a man who can't trust his friend...more
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Darwyn Cooke (b. 1962, Toronto, Canada) is an Eisner Award winning comic book writer, artist, cartoonist and animator, best known for his work on the comic books Catwoman, DC: The New Frontier and Will Eisner's The Spirit.

In 1985, Cooke published his first comic book work as a professional artist in a short story in New Talent Showcase #19, but economic pressure made him leave the career and he wo...more
More about Darwyn Cooke...
DC: The New Frontier, Vol. 1 DC: The New Frontier, Vol. 2 Richard Stark's Parker: The Hunter Absolute DC: The New Frontier Richard Stark’s Parker: The Score

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