Being a thief is a lot of hard work and eventually it is time to retire, but when you are the best at what you do retirement doesn’t always stick in Thief of Thieves Vol. 1.

Conrad Paulson aka Redmond is the best thief around.  He is famous in that circle of the criminal world. After taking big job after big job he has become tired of the life.  He has sacrificed so much in his life to be a thief.

Paulson decides to retire and try to reconnect with his ex-wife and his son.  He makes this declaration in front of all his thief friends and colleagues to their horror.  They are always looking at planning the next heist, but not having Paulson makes a hard heist almost impossible.

Even though his colleagues have left him alone the other side of the law has not.  FBI Agent Elizabeth Cohen serves a warrant and enters his house and waits for him to wake up.  She knows he is not just a defense consult, but is actually Redmond. Cohen puts Paulson on notice that she is coming for him, but first she is going after his son.

Paulson needs to pull off one last job to save his son.  However, what is he willing to sacrifice and what bridges is he willing to burn in order to do so?

Thief of Thieves Vol. 1 was written by Robert Kirkman and Nick Spencer with art by Shawn Martinbrough and Felix Serrano.  Image Comics published the volume in 2012.

I love crime noir and have reviewed and read a ton of it, but not a heist story so I thought this would be a good start.  Kirkman wrote this and I really like his other original work I mean Walking Dead and Invincible are both amazing.  I figured how could this not be at least pretty good.

The sad part is how wrong I was.  This comic is really in love with itself and the pulp story genre.  There are a lot of little cute titles like Stay In School.  How Augustus F***ed Up. These little titles make the comic really hard to read because my eyes are rolling so hard into the back of my head.

Planning a heist is always really interesting because we get to see all the planning and the B and C plans for when things go wrong.  However, that stuff is completely left out of this story. It goes from let’s plan a heist to alright all done with the heist here is some stuff we did.  All the cool planning stuff is left out.

The cat and mouse game between Cohen and Paulson made up a lot of the volume, but it was so boring.  It is not clear what exactly their history is, but they have some real sexual tension. However, they never act on it so I don’t know why they included it.  Paulson and his partner, Celia, also have sexual tension which is never acted on.

None of these characters are explored except Paulson and even his surface is barely scratched.  It is really hard to care when I know nothing about anyone.

I had a big problem with some of the art.  It is really hard to determine how old Paulson’s son is.  At one point they say 16, but when they show him he looks 35 on one page and then 15 on the next.  This comic has a ton of flashbacks so it is possible I misunderstood a page, but I don’t think so. A big part of the story is how much Paulson looks like his son and that makes it even more confusing who is in the flashback.

This was boring and a huge disappointment.  All the fun of crime and heist stories is gone and we are left with a confusing story with characters I don’t care about.