True crime buffs take note: Dark Horse Comics is embarking on an ambitious project to chronicle the killing spree of Gary Leon Ridgway, aka The Green River Killer. The project, titled Green River Killer – A Detective Story, is to be authored by Jeff Jensen, whose father led the twenty-plus-year investigation for the killer responsible for forty-eight possible murders.
Dark Horse Comics elaborates on the project in today’s press release: In the summer of 1982, the bodies of five dead prostitutes were found on the marshy banks of Seattle’s Green River. One year later, the remains of six more women were discovered, prompting local law enforcement to officially declare that a serial killer was at work. Over the next several years more bodies were found, cleverly hidden and most of them long dead, and by 1988, the death toll reached forty-eight suspected victims. Yet, despite the efforts of sixty detectives, the Green River Killer could not be found. In 1990, the Green River Task Force disbanded and the case was all but forgotten, to be left in the hands of one detective.
While the comic book medium may seem like a strange outlet to chronicle such an expansive story, Jensen explains his attraction to it: ”I’m excited to be telling his [father’s] story, and thrilled that we’re doing it as a graphic novel with Dark Horse. My father taught me to read with comics. As a teenager, I became a fan of the medium for life thanks to Alan Moore, Frank Miller, the Hernandez brothers, Neil Gaiman, Howard Chaykin, Harvey Pekar, and Daniel Clowes–artists who opened my eyes to how comics can tackle mature material in a sophisticated fashion. Ramón [artist Ramón K. Pérez] and I and everyone here want to do justice to my father’s story in a smart, compelling, sensitive way, and we hope that the result is worthy of the comics that have inspired us.
Sounds cool. If it’s half as engrossing as Brian Bendis’ Torso, it’ll be worth a look. We’ll find out sometime in 2010 when Dark Horse Comics lines store shelves everywhere.
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