I guess Brubaker thought Criminal was out of control too, because for the Sinners, he returns to his most solid protagonist–Tracy Lawless (from the second arc of the first series).
For a while it works. We catch up with Tracy. In the year since the last story took place, he’s become a hitman with a conscious. He worries about his boss’s rebelling teenager daughter, cuddles his boss’s distraught trophy wife and seems to be an all-around nice guy.
He’s kind of turned into Burt Lancaster in a film noir. Not mean enough to be Kirk Douglas or Richard Widmark.
(At least he’s not Victor Mature).
The problems come from Brubaker’s lack of imagination. Sure, he’s got to be sleeping with his boss’s wife–it adds drama, but it’s pretty darn contrived, especially in Criminal.
Then there’s the ending–Tracy narrates an event he’s not present to experience. Huh?