Sin City is the title for a series of comics by Frank Miller, told in a film noir-like style (now known as Neo noir). The first story originally appeared in "Dark Horse's Fifth Anniversary Special" (April, 1991), and continued in Dark Horse Presents #51–62 from May 1991 to June 1992, under the title of Sin City, serialized in thirteen parts. Several other stories of variable lengths have followed. All stories take place in Basin City, with frequent recurring characters and intertwining stories.
A movie adaptation of Sin City, co-directed by Robert Rodriguez and Miller with "special guest director" Quentin Tarantino, was released on April 1, 2005. The Sin City volumes were reprinted with new covers and in a reduced size to coincide with the motion picture's theatrical release. A planned sequel to the 2005 hit has been moved around the release schedule for years, with current plans having pre-production start in 2010.
The setting is Basin City.
- Dwight McCarthy
- Nancy Callahan
- John Hartigan
- Roark Junior (aka. The Yellow Bastard)
Because a large majority of the residents of Basin City are criminals, there are several organizations and cartels central to the stories who are vying for monopoly over the various criminal enterprises in the city. Listed below are crime syndicates, gangs and other low-lifes who figure heavily in the Sin City mythos.
- The Basin City Police Department
- So deep do corruption and criminality run in Basin City that even their police officers qualify as a gang of paid thugs, turning a blind eye to the affairs of those too poor to pay them off. Few among them are considered incorruptible; even the honest officers are unable (or unwilling) to curtail the criminal actions of the dishonest ones. Notable characters in the series who are police include Detective John Hartigan, his partner Bob, Lieutenants Jack Rafferty and Mort, Commissioner Liebowitz, and Officers Manson and Bundy from Hell and Back.
- The Roark family
- A dynasty of corrupt landowners and politicians whose influence over Basin City has stretched as far back as the days of the Old West. Famous Roarks of this generation include a senator, a cardinal, an attorney general, and Roark Junior, 'That Yellow Bastard'.
- The Girls of Old Town
- Populating the region of Basin City known as Old Town are a group of women in the world's oldest profession, having made a truce with the cops to allow them to govern and police themselves. As of A Dame To Kill For, they were led by the twins, Goldie and Wendy.
- Wallenquist Organization
- A powerful crime syndicate led by Herr Wallenquist, a mysterious crime lord with a broad range of criminal enterprises to his name. Interestingly, though one of the city's two "normal" criminal organizations, the Wallenquist management seems to be the most peaceful and forgiving of the various leaders.
- The Magliozzi Crime Family
- The undisputed heads of the local Cosa Nostra, the Magliozzi family seems to be the purest example of "true" Mafia lifestyle. While they appear in only one story, it is hinted that the Mafia influence in Basin City's underworld is a lot larger than just their family.
Other groups that have been seen or mentioned in the comics include:
- Tong gangsters
- Mentioned, but not seen as of A Dame To Kill For. Miho's life was saved by Dwight when he secretly protected her during a fight with several Tong gangsters in a dark alleyway.
- White slavers
- Mentioned, but not seen as of A Dame To Kill For. Led by a man named Manuel, whose brothers were also involved. Were "taken care of" by Dwight prior to the events of A Dame To Kill For.
- Irish mercenaries
- Seen during The Big Fat Kill, most of them are evidently former I.R.A. members, as implied by one of the mercenaries referring to his glee at blowing up a public house (British pubs were targeted by the I.R.A.). All are killed by Dwight and Miho.
Sin City yarns
These are the individual stories, usually referred to as "yarns," set in Frank Miller's Sin City universe.
- The Hard Goodbye
- A Dame To Kill For
- The Babe Wore Red and Other Stories
- The Big Fat Kill
- Silent Night
- That Yellow Bastard
- Daddy's Little Girl
- Lost, Lonely & Lethal
- Sex & Violence
- Just Another Saturday Night
- Family Values
- Hell And Back
- Booze, Broads & Bullets
- Just Another Saturday Night
- Fat Man and Little Boy
- The Customer is Always Right
- Silent Night
- And Behind Door Number Three?
- Blue Eyes
- Daddy's Little Girl
- Wrong Turn
- Wrong Track
- The Babe Wore Red
The stories have been collected into trade paperbacks and hardcover "Library Editions". The hardcovers include two releases, which include Volume 1 (Books 1-4) and 2 (Books 5-7 and "The Art of").
|The Hard Goodbye||Episodes #1–13 of 13||ISBN 1593072937|
|A Dame to Kill For||Issues #1–6 of 6||ISBN 1593072945|
|The Big Fat Kill||Issues #1–5 of 5||ISBN 1593072953|
|That Yellow Bastard||Issues #1–6 of 6||ISBN 1593072961|
|Family Values||The 128-page original graphic novel||ISBN 159307297X|
|Booze, Broads, & Bullets||A number of one-shots||ISBN 1593072988|
|Hell And Back||Issues #1–9 of 9||ISBN 1593072996|
There is also a collection of art, The Art of Sin City.
Sin City: The Big Fat Kill won the Comics Buyer's Guide Fan Award for Favorite Limited Series for 1996. Sin City: Family Values won the 1997 Eisner Awards.
- Sin City won the "Best Black & White Title" Project Fanboy Award
Sin City is famous for its artwork, which draws heavily from film noir, including its use of shadow and stark backgrounds. Black and white are the sole colors most of the time with exception of red, yellow and blue in some stories. Partial color usage is designed to draw attention to a certain character in the story.
The writing style also draws heavily on detective and crime pulp fiction. Strange metaphors and similes are often used. This gives the narration a very "pulpy" feel.
- 1993 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award Nominees and Winners
- 1995 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award Nominees and Winners
- 1996 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award Nominees and Winners
- 1996 Harvey Award Nominees and Winners
- 1998 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award Nominees
- 1998 Harvey Award Nominees and Winners
- 2008 Project Fanboy Award Winners
- Sin City at Dark Horse Comics
- Frank Miller`s Sin City & 300 & Spirit - Database articles, images and other files about Frank Millers and his comics.
- Sin City Introduction - Fan site containing detailed information about characters and locations
- Sin City Timeline, from the personal website of a Hero System game player
- Sin City, from an ad-supported website "devoted to the sophisticated study of comic books"
- Frank Miller: The Complete Works, The most comprehensive listing of all of Frank Miller's works. Includes very detailed information on each book as well as a discussion forum.
- IFILM explore Rats: A Sin City Yarn, The Short Story out of Lost, Lonely, & Lethal.
- SuperheroHype! Sin City Messageboard, Forums dedicated to both the comics and film.
- Sin City Effect Tutorial Achieve the "Sin City Look" in your videos with Sony Vegas (Video Tutorial).