Coney Island’s Luna Park Subject of DC Comic

Cover detail courtesy of
Cover detail courtesy of

Coney Island collides with the world of comic books in Kevin Baker’s Luna Park from Vertigo/DC Comics. The story follows Alik Strelnikov, a Russian mafia “enforcer” and explores parts of the community’s criminal underworld, while also delving into the immigrant experience. The plot periodically flashes back to Alik’s ancestors in Russia and examine how their choices shaped his existence, while Alik navigates his complicated life in the modern day Coney Island with his fortune-telling/prostitute girlfriend Marina. To complicate matters, Alik is having a hard time coming to terms with his military past. Together, Alik and Marina embark on the American Dream, trying to improve their lot in life and escape their situation in Coney Island. In a WSJ Blog the comics’ author Kevin Baker compares Alik to “Jake Gittes in Chinatown or Roy Hobbs in The Natural or even Jay Gatsby.” But to the digital generation [i.e. me], he sounds a lot more like Grand Theft Auto IV’s Niko Bellic or even Nicolas Cage’s Yury Orlov from Lord of War. Either way, this should be a colorful depiction of the historic neighborhood, and certainly not another Brighton Beach Memoirs.


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