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The Sheriff of Babylon: The Deluxe Edition

(The Sheriff of Babylon #1-2)

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4.33  ·  Rating details ·  415 ratings  ·  50 reviews
Inspired by his real-life experiences as a CIA operations officer in Iraq, writer Tom King teams with artist Mitch Gerads--the creative team behind the critically acclaimed Mister Miracle--to deliver a wartime crime thriller like no other. The Sheriff of Babylon: The Deluxe Edition collects all 12 issues of the groundbreaking Vertigo series. This special hardcover volume a ...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published March 20th 2018 by Vertigo
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Lashaan Balasingam (Bookidote)
You can find my review on my blog by clicking here.

Way before Tom King got on board to write Batman for the Rebirth era of DC Comics, he was an ex-CIA operations officer in Iraq and racked up a couple of months of experience that he later translated into a phenomenal wartime crime thriller known as The Sheriff of Babylon. It was when Vertigo came in contact with him to write a series for them that the idea of drawing upon his time in Baghdad came to mind. What he ultimately conjured thanks to th
...more
Shannon Appelcline
Oct 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics, comics-indy
The Sheriff of Babylon is a brutal look at Iraq after Saddam by comic super-star Tom King, based on his real-life experiences there.

It's slightly hard to write a review of it, because the story is complex enough and muddy enough that I think it requires a second read for full understanding. This isn't unusual for a King story, but I think it's more pronounced in this early work.

Nonetheless this a shocking and soulful story of an Iraq descending into cruelty and barbarism. It's heartfelt because
...more
Derek Royal
Sep 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is another title that I've been meaning to read, or finish, for a while. I had started The Sheriff of Babylon a couple of times, reading the first few issues in the 12-issue series. But now that I got the Deluxe Edition, I made it a point of finishing the entire thing. Tom King is an incredible writer, and this is notable example of his more realistic or real-world narrative style. Incredible! Next, I want to read his Vision, about which I've also heard wonderful things.
Andy Hickman
Jun 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
“The Sheriff of Babylon” by Tom King (Writer), Mitch Gerads (Illustrator)
*****

“The Sheriff of Babylon” Vol.1 “BANG.BANG.BANG.” by Tom King (Writer), Mitch Gerads (Illustrator)
*****
Phenomenal series. The best presentation of the brutal reality of the immediate aftermath of the USA's doomed military invasion of Iraq at the start of the 21st century. Deeply empathetic it highlights the injustice and arrogance of personalities in pursuit of their own agendas in a politically hostile and physically p
...more
Grumpy Old Man
Aug 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Great characters, great story, beautiful art and an amazing setting.
This comic is all that the Green Zone movie wanted to be.
There are no heroes in this comic, you will root for all of them and at the same time they will disgust you in some way.
You will laugh, cry and stop to think A LOT.
In the end you will be coming back for seconds, just to see if you missed something.
Tigertemprr
Jul 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
**The Sheriff of Babylon | 85%** | #1-12, Tom King, war, crime, thriller | American military contractor trains new Iraqi police in 2003 until one of his recruits is murdered. A realistic glimpse into war-torn Iraq, the Green Zone, disenfranchised people, culture clash, jingoism, and shady political atmosphere. Guns, bodies, terror, family, bureaucracy, corruption, religion, unlikely alliances, backroom deals. Loved Gerads’ efficient movement, 9-panel grids, grit, and captured body language/facia ...more
Courtney Ricca
Jun 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
Another reason to love Tom King. I only recently have gotten into reading comics and he has taught me that there is so much diversity within this genre.
William
Oct 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
I have been in the middle of some longer reading projects, so haven't finished a book recently. But I received this for my birthday and took a break to tear through it.

I first encountered Tom King by reading his 12-issue Vision run on Marvel Unlimited, which was excellent. I've been picking up the monthlies of his current Mister Miracle, which is also very, very good. So I was very much looking forward to this.

King started his career in comic books, but joined the CIA's counter-terrorism unit af
...more
John Mendiola
Sep 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My first Tom King book. Wow.

Tom King has blown up in the comic world these past few years and even a part time comic reader has been swept up in all the excitement of the stuff he’s been working on. That said, I haven’t actually read anything of his until this book and wow, I really regret that. I’m going to guess that I’ll end up reading all of his works in the next coming weeks and months.

More on this book though. As someone who has never served in Iraq, it did an amazing job of putting me on
...more
Kyle Berk
Sheriff of Babylon is something special.

It’s about the cop turned military contractor Chris Henry. Chris discovers a body. And Chris is the only one who seems to give a shit. From there Sofia who now has a governing seat, and Nassir a former cop in Baghdad come into the fold. And the twelve issue story starts.

And it’s a journey. It’s slow at first but it builds until you’re locked in and see horror. Sheriff of Babylon covers a lot of ground. And it’s not a subject I’m really familiar with or ha
...more
Ystyn Francis
Jan 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Wow! This is a sensational read. Potentially the best war-related graphic novel since “Maus”, it is indeed graphic in its brutal portrayal of an Iraq torn apart by the various parties and agendas triggered by 9/11 and the War on Terror. Despite some of the misleading cover art, “The Sheriff of Babylon” has a complicated and engaging female protagonist at the core of its story, and the narrative successfully juggles elements of history, politics, gender, and violence to produce a vivid and engagi ...more
Sean Kottke
Aug 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novel, 2018
The creative team of Tom King and Mitch Gerads is quickly becoming a favorite pairing, based on this superb mystery and their work on Mister Miracle. There are crosses and double-crosses galore as the murder mystery unfolds and each protagonist's back story gradually unwinds. King and Gerads have a knack for building tension, conveying trauma, and setting up agonizing dilemmas. The core characters are well drawn (pun intended), and the story manages to avoid politicizing a highly charged scenari ...more
Zachary
Apr 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Drawing upon his experiences in the CIA during the Iraq War(2003) Tom King weaves a dark and sad tale of people pushed to the brink by the horrific events happening around them as the books three main characters try to make sense and cope with war and loss. Don't go into this story expecting clear heroes and villains, shades of gray and questionable morals define this tale.
Topher Marsh
Apr 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
SOB is an international war/crime noir graphic novel. Tom King's writing is amazing as usual. King writes as a story in which Graham Greene meets Dashiell Hammett. In addition to King's writing, 1/2 the story is told through Mitch Gerads’s art which is outstanding, vivid, and truthful.
Dave
Sep 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A nice change of pace from Tom King's superhero stories, this 12 issue series (collected in beautiful hardcover format) sees King team up with artist Mitch Gerards to tell an engaging story set in post Invasion Iraq. The narrative is loosely focused around former San Diego police officer turned military consultant Chris Henry as he attempts to solve the murder of one of his Iraqi police recruits over a two month period. Other primary characters include former Iraqi police officer turned American ...more
Les Abernathy
Jul 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
There's just something about nine perfectly aligned rectangular panels in graphic novels that give me a nice big chubby. I know that's TMI, but if you're reading this review, about this book, then you should be able to stomach it. Because that's the kind of constitution you'll need to able to navigate such an intense book.

The Sheriff of Babylon, at its core, is an extremely well-written noir detective story with a deep background and rich characters. It quickly establishes that this isn't an eas
...more
Ryan Stanton
Aug 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
It’s taken me over a month to review this book, in part because I’m lazy, and in part because I don’t know that I have anything particularly fresh, new or insightful to say about it.

It’s a good comic. It tackles America’s occupation with more nuance than most other fictional narratives set in the time I’ve encountered, and it’s genuinely refreshing to see the majority of characters have a perspective that isn’t that of ‘American in the field’. Gerads realistic art works well to capture the emot
...more
Carl
Oct 15, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
fantastically dark neo-noir set in post Saddam Iraq in 2004.

Sheriff focuses on three central characters: Nassir a former investigator from Saddam's police force, Saffiya, an american raised iraqi, now on the governing council and Christopher King, former cop turned military contractor and sent to Iraq to train anew Iraqi police force. One of his recruits is murdered and soon this trio comes in contact with each other again and again.

these three characters transmogrify and change as well as the
...more
Peter Holz
Jul 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is an intensely powerful story. Set during the US occupation of Iraq in 2004, it follows three people: Chris, an American sent to train the Iraqi police force, Sofia, an Iraqi on the governing council, and Nassir, an Iraqi police veteran, as they attempt to solve the murder of one of Chris's recruits. As the author was an ex-CIA operative during this time he presumably knows whereof he speaks. He did a tremendous job of transporting me into Baghdad and into the lives and minds of the people ...more
Mat Davies
Mar 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a brilliant book. Set in the aftermath of Saddam Hussein’s reign in Iraq with American contractors, spies and covert operations to the fore, it tells the story of Chris Henry, a cop turned military contractor, trying to do his best against a background of divided loyalties, double crossings and dark, ambiguous and downright murderous dealings. Henry is a compelling protagonist, searching for truth and justice in an environment that seems hell bent on delivering anything but.

Written by f
...more
Gregory
Mar 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book from the current writer of Batman. It wasn't at all political, just showing a view of the Middle East from people who live there or a part of the American occupation forces in Iraq from 2004. This story is based on King's experiences when he worked for the CIA as an Analyst.

The Characters are very convincing as real people and have their own personal stories to deal with. I don't want to give away any spoilers because you need to read it for yourself and this is this
...more
Matt
Apr 29, 2020 rated it liked it
Collects The Sheriff of Babylon issues #1-12

This hardcover collects the complete series. I'm a huge fan of Tom King's writing, so I wanted to check out his early work. I hadn't got to it yet, because I'm not a huge fan of war fiction, but he is such a good writer, that I knew I had to read it someday. Overall, while I can see some of the strengths, it still wasn't my favorite thing to read. This is well written, but not for me.

James Lawner
Not as good as The Vision, better than Mister Miracle, but I still can’t comprehend why Tom King is so beloved.

What the hell actually happened in this story? What was the point of anything? What did we learn from all of this? Why did Nassir shoot those soldiers in his basement? Why did a Muslim woman have an out-of-wedlock affair with a Non-Muslim man? Why does Tom King always write dull, repetitive dialogue? So many questions and I’m pretty sure I’ll never get the answers.

Overall, I hate comics
...more
Doug
Sep 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Tom King has written the definitive record of the Iraq/Afghanistan wars. Want to know why we can't succeed in the Middle East? Want to know why good intentions aren't enough? Want to figure out why those in the Middle East hate us? Wonder why they see us as foreign invaders instead of liberators? Read this book. It's a must.
Cody Wayne
Aug 03, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I did not enjoy this one at all. I really liked his Vision story of a similar length, so this was a huge letdown. I could never get interested in any of the characters or plot lines, and there was way too much boring conversation.
John
Oct 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Entertaining from start to finish with very realistic art and characters. The one hitch to that is that the story isn't one you'd expect from a (graphic) novel but rather just a chain of events that might actually be happening within a much larger picture.
Ramon
Apr 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is one of King's best works, the kind I wish more of his capes readers would take a chance on, informed by his own experience as an analyst. The kind few people can really tell the way he can, with his perspective. Lovely art as well.
Art
A complex and compelling story. Not a happy tale, but one that gave me a view into a world I do not know. It was stark and sometimes brutal. The artwork gave the book a cinematic feel. I mean that as a positive. Worth reading.
Druss
Jan 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: graphic-novel
Bought because of good reviews. An interesting read, will get the next book. Worked well on the Comixology app
Will Cooper
Feb 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What an incredible story about three people, their interactions, and their existing in a war-torn area.
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The Sheriff of Babylon (2 books)
  • The Sheriff of Babylon, Volume 1: Bang. Bang. Bang.
  • The Sheriff of Babylon, Volume 2: Pow. Pow. Pow.

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