Return Of The Super Pimps issues 1-6 are written by Richard A. Hamilton, drawn by Ulises Carpintero and Rich Bonilla, colored and lettered by various talents, and published by Dial “C” For Comics, Richard’s company.
Truth be told, the Blaxploitation movie was not, as has been popularly put forward by certain filmmakers and documentaries, merely made up of Black crime genre stories. There were comedies and dramas made during those days starring Black folk. There were even horror movies featuring mostly or all Black casts. Yet, for many, the Blaxploitation movement is treated as a singular genre–much like manga is today–with one almost universally pervasive stereotype that stands as the purest representative of those films: the hustler, the pimp.
Richard Hamilton is old enough to know that figure from those movies. But what he does to that stereotype turns it on its ear and seemingly redeems it. By doing that he lives up to his desire to mix the nobility of superheroes with the power of Funk and Soul, as stated in his first issue afterword.
The basic plot of Return Of The Super Pimps is this: The Super Pimps, a band of urban hustlers turned superheroes, once protected The Hood, an every-ghetto, from all manner of villains. That was, until one of their number lost his life in battle. That sad turn of events caused the SP’s leader, Blackbeard, to quit the hero biz and disband the team. Decades later, in our time, Police Detective Maple learns of the death of the SP’s former faithful servant and sets out to find his childhood heroes to tell them the news. Along the way, old friendships are tested and renewed, an old foe returns, and a team of heroes is reborn.
Return Of The Super Pimps is a fun read. Nothing that will change the world of comics but a good, solid adventure yarn, full of characters and situations not normally seen in the standard superhero comic.
Return Of The Super Pimps
Written by Richard Hamilton
Pencils by Ulises Roman
Colors by Jasen Smith & Maria Laura
Letters by Atlantis Studios
Blackbeard — the leader with the living ‘locks! Ghetto Blaster — wielder of the fantastic 8-Track Suit! Homboy — the sentinel with a special connection to the street! Foxy Mama — lupine lady of the night! Sidekick — rookie kung-fu master! Over twenty-five years ago these Urban Revengers, these Super Pimps, protected The Hood from the diabolical Darquefire and were working to make their neighborhood a safe place to grow up. But on a fateful night as these five funky crimefighters battled their arch nemesis, a tragedy took place so horrific that Blackbeard not only walked away from the Super Pimps, he disbanded the entire group right on the spot.
Now, Detective Maple, whose boyhood heroes were the Super Pimps, patrols the very streets his idols once did. When he is called in on a murder, he recognizes the victim as Flapjack, the trusty servant of the crimefighters who have since subsided into urban legend. Using his skills as a detective, Maple hunts down one Marcus Maddox, who used to be Blackbeard, and is now a father trying to give his kids a better life than he did. Maple’s encounter with Maddox leads to meetings with the rest of former jive justice seekers, who reunite as citizens in the streets of The Hood. They soon discover evidence that Darquefire has returned, stronger than ever, and only some superpowered playas are going to be able to stop him. The five return to The Crib, their old secret headquarters, and suit up ready to take to streets. It is time to walk the walk and talk the talk, but are these middle-aged mofos still heroes or just has-beens?
Pouring out of the mind of Richard Hamilton, whose childhood was filled with the constantly spinning records of Kool And The Gang, the cinematic badness of Shaft, and Stan Lee’s multitude of comics, comes this glorious blaX-Men-ploitation! Hamilton puts his screenwriting training to excellent use here, with a super fresh and righteous story that spills from one page to the next. You can almost hear the booming bass and see the glitter of the disco ball in each carefully penned pun and feel the real fur boas as Hamilton culls every stereotype from the street and make it his own.
Each character, as in any superhero group book, is given a specific power and personality that both works to bring the group together in a crimefighting harmony, but has enough quirk to cause strife. The book’s obvious influence are Marvel’s mutant heroes, with a slightly more subtle influence from Warren Ellis’ The Authority. Hamilton’s decision to tell the back story through the eyes of young Maple also calls to mind the outsider-looking-in mentality of Marvels or Astro City. Hamilton has also worked hard to make his characters as imperfect humans with all the insecurity and doubts that come with them. As of issue three, Hamilton has yet to dive into how these superheroes obtained their powers, but their natural aging suggests they are mortal. This plays an important part of some of the subplots and adds an element of danger to their decision to reform well past their prime.
In order to bring his creation to the page, Hamilton needed artists who were as much in touch with the style of his heroes as he was. Hamilton found a crew of pencilers, inkers, and colorists who fit the bill perfectly. The character designs are top notch, and like or Dr. Black and Mr. Hyde, each seem to find roots in a pre-established character and then given a makeover by Xzibit. The colors are particularly striking, and each page is drenched in so much purple even Huggy Bear would blush with embarrassment.
If you strip away all the flashy funk and glitz, and the seemingly hokey riff on the ghetto lifestyle, Hamilton’s story not only has heart, but has several messages that he sneakily slips in. His overt push for education and good parenting through Blackbeard should be applauded, and his warning against STDs rivals any comic book sub-context to date. These books may be a little tricky to track down in a local comic shop, and you might have to go straight to the source, but any trouble is well worth it to add these to your collection.
Source : geeksofdoom.com
Return Of The Super Pimps comics are a part of The Museum of UnCut Funk Collection.