Tom Russo
December 13, 2004 AT 05:00 AM EST

There’s a reason that writer-artist Gary Chaloner’s take on the titular one-eyed, two-fisted cop feels retro: Comics legend Will Eisner actually introduced the character in 1948 in a short-lived bid to expand on his signature franchise, The Spirit (the new book reprints Eisner’s handful of original Law tales). Save for drawing a flash of skin here or penning a mild obscenity there, in Dead Man Walking Chaloner faithfully strives to recapture Law’s quaint brand of gee-willikers noir. Still, a prologue skillfully depicting racism in Law’s world will make you wish Chaloner had strayed more.

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