''Perdition'' writer to pen ''CSI'' comic series. CBS spins off the hit sleuth drama into a five-issue comic, to be written by ''Road to Perdition'' creator Max Allan Collins

First, there was ”CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” the CBS forensic-sleuth series starring William Petersen and Marg Helgenberger that became TV’s top-rated drama this season. Then there was ”CSI: Miami,” the spinoff series launching this fall, with David Caruso. Now comes the latest spinoff ? CSI: The Comic Book. Variety reports that CBS has commissioned a five-issue ”CSI” comic book series from writer Max Allan Collins, the author of the graphic novel ”Road to Perdition,” the source of the current Tom Hanks mobster movie.

Collins has already written two novelizations incorporating the ”CSI” team of Las Vegas forensic detectives, ”Double Dealer” and the forthcoming ”Sin City,” due in October. But those books weren’t illustrated. The comics, which IDW Publishing will issue monthly starting in December, will be drawn by Gabriel Rodriguez and feature cover art and other illustrations by Ashley Wood (”Spawn,” ”X-Men”). Between Collins and his illustrators, the comics should have no trouble replicating the series’ stylish gruesomeness. No word on whether ”CSI”’s Thursday night rival, NBC’s ”ER,” will fight back with a comic book of its own.