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4 Things We Need From the SIN CITY TV Show

With the announcement of a brand new Sin City show coming from TWC-Dimension, guided by The Walking Dead showrunner Glen Mazarra and Underworld’s Len Wiseman directing, we’re already plotting on all the ways this adaptation stand out from the other comic book shows currently cluttering up TV schedules.


Sin City is one of the most lauded and controversial books that’s ever hit the shelves of your local comic shop, written and drawn by Frank Miller and published by Dark Horse Comics. An uber-violent take on the well-worn noir genre that flung Miller’s now notorious style into the spotlight, it became an instant cult classic and landed itself in the annals of so called seminal comics.

Whether or not you’ve picked up a copy of Sin City, we’re here to tell you what the show can do to make sure it lives up to the potential of its source material, leaving behind some of the more dated aspects whilst still telling a radical and relevant story.


1) Strong Women

Frank Miller loves strong women–he created the first female Robin, Carrie Kelley, in his legendary book, The Dark Knight Returns–and Basin City is full of them. Though the book’s representation of women often veers into the exploitative, there are still a wealth of amazing characters that the show could explore and expand upon. If Sin City decided to focus on one of its many female characters, it could set itself apart as a comic book ensemble show that has a primary female protagonist, potentially even a woman of color. This choice would also subvert the overdone tropes of noir and its homage driven sibling, neo-noir, that often focus on down-and-out men who’re usually one more drink away from some kind of terrible tragedy. Turning the femme fatale archetype on its head is something Frank Miller always claimed he was doing with his representation of women in Sin City, and if the show followed that concept in a more nuanced way it could really be the start of something special.


2) Inclusive Casting

From the outset of Sin City, you realise that Basin City is filled with all kinds of people. Though on rereading Miller’s magnum opus the representations of race may seem sloppy or fetishized, it does mean the show has a diverse roster to pull from. There’s no excuse for Sin City–or any other property in 2017–to be anything other than wholly inclusive. Firstly, these characters exist within the books, which is one of the earliest complaints many “fans” make in regards to inclusive casting. Secondly, Frank Miller takes influence from so many cultural touchstones–the clearly manga-influenced art to Pam Grier’s obvious impact on his blaxploitation tinged heroines–that Sin City itself would likely not exist without people of color and their creative output. This show has the chance to subvert its exploitative past and truly pay respect to its inspirations by focusing on a core cast of people of color.


3) That Iconic Style

Most fans tuning into a Sin City based show are going to be desperate to lay their eyes on that now synonymous black and white with its vibrant spot colors. The 2005 film adaptation did a great job creating something that looked truly unique, and was at the time one of the best looking comic book films ever made. Miller and Rodriguez’s heavily greenscreened, over-stylized black and white aesthetic has not only aged relatively poorly but it requires an incredibly labor-intensive process, which led–amongst other things–to the sequel not being released until a decade later. Whatever route the production team decide to go this time around, they’ll really need to lean heavily into the comics’ stark monochrome with those beautiful splashes of color to get fans stoked for this new incarnation.


4) Fantastic Storytelling

When it comes to storytelling, the Sin City books are pretty decompressed. Though essentially a set of anthology comics which tell stories of different inhabitants in Basin City, a single character’s tale might be spread over several issues or even a couple different collections. While Miller’s effectiveness in the original comics is very much reliant on visual storytelling and the classic noir structure of minimal dialogue with an expository voiceover, the show would do well to move away from this. In the age of television like Game of Thrones, Mad Men, How to Get Away With Murder, and Riverdale, there’s a space for expansive, surprising shows that also focus on in depth exploratory storytelling whilst feeling urgent, engaging, and enjoyable. If done right, it’s here that Sin City could truly thrive.


Who do you wanna see (dis)gracing the streets of Basin City? Which iconic scenes would you love to see brought to life? Or is Sin City old news? Fire away in our comments!

Images: Frank Miller/Dark Horse Comics

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