Wednesday, October 04, 2006

New Comics Day

This week's stack has a nice heft to it.

Justice League of America
Y The Last Man
Manifest Eternity
Battler Britton
Sock Monkey
Street Fighter Legends: Sakura
The Vault: Mike Allred (!)

Weather it's the free-for-all nuttiness of Madman, or the tragically hip X-Statix, Mike Allred ranks towards the top of "comics for the sake of comics." The thick collection of AAA Pop Comics' Vault is a fanstastic behind the scenes look at Allred's work over the years. I'm telling you folks, those original Madman comics were like nothing of their time, refreshing is an apt description of what was coming off the page. As Madman matured into the Atomics, Allred dove into every story head first, and after years of great books, he could still come out of nowhere with a line of dialogue, plot point, or single panel of art that made me go, "What the fuck??"

In more recent times there was a insanely serendipitous pairing with writer Peter Milligan on Marvel's X-Force, ala X-Statix. This was the best book Marvel had published for a long, long, time. The characters it introduced in its run are more memorable than any number of X-Men and infinitely more interesting. Over at DC, there has been some brief appearances on Superman and a must-have issue of Solo-- containing one of the best Batman stories ever told.

Mike Allred as a storyteller is engaging, quirky, and just kind of weird. As an artist he projects inspiration of an almost daunting sort. With drawings so clean, stripped of any excess in rendering, one wonders if it looks so good because he makes it look easy. Oh, man, can this guy draw. The X-Force cover here is so perfect in its composition and execution that I can hardly believe it's a cover of X-Force.

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