The Tithe Volume 1 is an artfully written cops and robbers tale combining a modern retelling of the classic Robin Hood story line with everyone’s favorite good cop, bad cop scenario. Think Mel Gibson, the cocksure, hotshot young partner, and Danny Glover, the older, wiser family man, ala the Lethal Weapon movie franchise.
The story follows the exploits of a well-organized hacker group Samaritan, comprised of modern day Robin Hood Samantha Copeland and her merry men accomplices as they heist large sums of cash from Televangelist style Mega churches they discovered through carefully planned surveillance to be misusing tithes donated by their congregations. The group exposes these fraudulent ministries to the congregations while gathering evidence which they release to the FBI agents investigating Samaritan, to focus their efforts instead on the fraudulent churches.
Samaritan distributes the stolen money to charities, winning admiration and support from the public. Along the way, the group struggles with internal conflict, involving drug use, bad decisions, and ultimately murder. They wrestle with the difficulties of keeping it together until the job is complete, and their last targeted churches are exposed and brought down.
In pursuit of this band of merry men are two intrepid FBI agents. Dwayne Campbell, the seasoned, “too old for this shit” agent trying to maintain his faith in the face of religious corruption not to mention convince his partner belief is a good thing. Campbell also wants his partner to realize there’s nothing wrong with good old fashioned leg work. The other is Jimmy Miller, the cocky, younger agent who doesn’t think much of his mentor’s ways, has little respect for faith, and is more involved in investigation through technology.
Despite their differences, the two form a professional and personal bond allowing them to work together to perform their duties and even allows for above and beyond performance from Jimmy, when his partner and family are placed in mortal danger and Jimmy arrives in the nick of time to save them.
Co-creator and writer Matt Hawkins was thorough in his research and even included a section providing documentation to that effect. This displays his devotion to what he terms, heist stories. This devotion made for an entertaining, believable story that I would highly recommend, especially to fans of this particular genre, who won’t be disappointed. Co-creator and artist Rahan Ekedal’s work portrays a stark realism while Bill Farmer and Mike Spicer’s colorist talents lend the story an earthy, made for tv Detective serial feel.
This trade paperback edition collects issues 1-4 of The Tithe.
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Geek-o-Rama received a copy of this book for the purpose of this review. All thoughts, comments and opinions are those of the individual reviewer.