Inert, but Not Forgotten!

July 31, 2009 at 12:42 am (Comic Books)

Wednesday Comics #4

It’s already been four issues, hasn’t it? It seems like just yesterday this title was bursting with promise, and now it’s trying to actualize it. It could use a check-in.

(More reviews below the jump)

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I think I’m going to make this kind of a feature.

July 16, 2009 at 3:42 am (Comic Books)

Each week, I’ll review a comic that came out which inspired thoughts. Sounds like a great deal for visiting a comic blog, right?

After Wednesday Comics’ for the most part stutter step which may or may not deserve more mention, I instead turn to the impeccable but impeachable

Captain America #601

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Forum Rhetorical Strategies Before They Were Cool

July 15, 2009 at 3:20 am (1)

For the forum comics reader lamenting the raping of one’s childhood (who would probably be very far away from this blog), I present Alex Toth, 1991, who lamented the dirth of entertainment’s moralities both before it was cool to link it with the apocalypse, and to also provide a reasonable framework for the apocalypse (logically, he gives it a couple generations for Shadowhawk to turn into the Anti-Christ), and while he does imply that comics need to be changed, he spends more time in lament than imperative, a slyer move when one’s target is an industry instead of its itinerants.

Oy.

If only he drew this manic condemnation in minimal black and white style, an inferno creeping up with background images of children reading about Speedy shooting heroin turning into vicious mosnters. For an artist at once concerned with both storytelling detail, innovatingly dropping backgrounds out of his frames to intensify moments and plopping details into a comic’s setting to slow it down, all while obsessively focused on the formal aspects (just read through any of his Zorro comics and look for the lighting source in each comic. Characters walk around a room, shadows remain fixed, and proportions are scrupulously maintained). Which is to say that he abandons all of these conventions besides the usage of no verbs to make his adjectives more exciting and powerful, ironically inverted to his common dropping of the background’s nouns to foreground a story’s verbs, in this small prose piece. He instead becomes the grumpy old man (whose work) we all know and love telling Howard Chaykin his comic skillz are terrible, and the gentle fan humbled that he even got an insult from the man.

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Okay, my OTHER favorite type of superhero comic came out this week.

July 9, 2009 at 3:19 am (1)

I have definitely been getting back into comics lately these days, but mostly it has been like me finding a good price of those spiderman/Carnage/Silver Surfer issues on ebay instead of ones that are interesting to blog about. An exciting situation carries an artist well versed in costume designs but little else, my review would glumly say before scans and scans of pure, Cosmic Carnage, and any detached, critical thought evaporates from my gleeful eyes.

This trend, however, changes with this week’s comics in a big way. May I introduce the best idea for a 12 issue comic event since Solo or maybe even Big Numbers:

Wednesday Comics #1

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My absolutely favorite type of superhero comic came out this week,

July 2, 2009 at 4:00 pm (Comic Books)

and it’s pretty much the reason I still, more and more briefly these days, digest panels, and its related to the format’s work-for-hire aspects, a tremendously negative effect in every artistic way (“Now, who here wants to work without knowing who your collaborator is necessarily going to be, and you also better finish by the end of the month, m’kay?”, I imagine Jim Shooter announcing during annual Marvel recruiting sessions. The rest of the crowd shouts back, screaming, yes, gloriously yes, just let me draw Deathlok!). I speak not of the deadline crunching aspect (eww!), but the sheer creative industry involved in making comics. Out of the contemporary scene’s soup, an editor plucks enough creators available to draw this month’s issue of Batman, and the random fill-in guest star could astound. When Bill Sienkiewicz first drew an issue of New Mutants, or Frazer Irving drew a Civil War tie-in comic recalls finding a lost gem more than reading a storied classic. Read the rest of this entry »

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