Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Comics Recap

Zatanna #3
This is has a little crossover with some of the other Seven Soldiers titles, namely Shining Knight in a weird, backstage, Rosencrantz and Gildenstern sort of way. Tho what caught my interest was the origin hinting of Zatanna's new gal pal, Misty. Hmmm, Zatanna in peril, conflicting continuity, potential successor, Crisis... anyone thinking what I'm thinking? I'm officially adding Zatanna to the "Bites it in Crisis" list, altho with the solicit for IC #2 with Power Girl on the cover, she'll have some company.

Rann-Thanagar War #4
I've read online reviews that this book is "incomprehensible." I do not think so. If you are looking for answers in every possible corner and details on every featured race, granted, you will not get that. But that's what I think makes it so cool. In fact, If you didn't know word one about the DCU, this book could be appreciated on a level of sci-fi extravaganza I would be very envious of.

Ultimate Iron Man #3
I'm trying to figure out if this is "Ultimate Iron Man" or "The Ultimates' Iron Man," tho it's leaning towards the former. More interesting to me is seeing how Orison Scott Card adapts himself to the comics medium. I am certainly curious to what his scripts looks like, I wonder if he saw the first couple issues of art and thought, "Damn, I am writing way too much." I don't mean that his book is wordy, quite the contrary, I mean I wonder if he has elaborate panel descriptions for what essentially turn out to be "Tony is angry."

Wildsiderz #1
Well. If you've read the Wildsiderz debut, then I guess you kind of already know. If you haven't, I don't quite know how to describe it. The art is amazing-- Campbell has evolved from a talented comics artist to an accomplished cartoonist (and there is a difference). His comics storytelling is just as strong, in fact almost every page of the book can be read without any dialogue. Unfortunately there is dialogue. It's not too terrible, what struck me about the story and the script is that it hits every beat you would expect from a cartoon/sitcom/action movie and is either blissfully unaware or adamantly unapologetic of the fact. It's so entrenched in it's own formula that it almost has to be wildly successful, because that's what America likes, right? Wildsiderz also continues the Campbell/Hartnel tradition of inserting a hollywood icon into a supporting role. In Gen13 it was John Lynch:Clint Eastwood, in Danger Girl it was Deuce:Sean Connery, and it looks to me that Wildsiderz' Dr. Mirra Martin is channeling Halle Barry (in a wheelchair... awwwww). I'd say pick the book up for the art and the pretty colors and check your brain at the door.

New Warriros #3
I was poking around online and was very puzzled by the reactions to this book. On the message boards I passed over, readers seem to dislike the artwork of Skottie Young. "Dislike" is my word, some of the posts I've read were downright violent.

What is wrong with you people?

It's easy for me to say that, Young's art is exceptionally appealing to me. I know this is not so with everyone but it led me to start thinking about the bigger issue. I think comics readers, while not that easily defined, do fall into one of three categories:
1. Likes comics and reads comics they like, not particularly interested comics politics.
2. Loves comics and care passionately about the work and the industry, sometimes too much.
3. Comics belong to them and them alone, and care not for new readership or disruption of the status quo.

The first category is not concerned with the second two. The second category, to which I belong, is happy for the first, but not terribly fond of the third. The third category generally wants the first and second to fuck off. I usually like people who like comics -- though the steadfast refusal to try-- or at least tolerate-- anything new frankly scares me. Young's art is like nothing else on the shelf, and it is a bold and creative (rare) move by Marvel to try and appeal to another kind of reader--- the reader those #3's really don't want in the club. I mean, who would you rather be drawing New Warriors? Mark Bagely? Tom Grummet? What would be the point? They are both fine illustrators but would that truly serve the relaunch of New Warriors?

And there is the rub. #2's are really interested in such matters as what "serves the relaunch" of a book when most people aren't, and #3's would be perfectly happy if nothing ever changed in comics, ever (and apparently like bitching when it does as much as I do when it doesn't).

Skottie Young's Website

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