Wednesday, December 05, 2007

New Comics Day

Hmm, more Image and a Marvel, no love for DC!

Ultimates 3
Suburban Glamour
Age of Bronze vol 3

Believe me when I say it is with dread that I purchased the newest incarnation of The Ultimates. I feel the prior Millar/Hitch versions are the definitive and simply cannot be matched in tone or visuals. I'm pretty sure I don't even have to read the new one, as Jeph Loeb-- founding member of the Destroyers of Comics Triad-- may as well have cut and pasted his trite and over-expository narrative style from any one of his other books. Culling Joe Mad out of quasi-retirement isn't exactly the counter-balance to this, as in his absence his-once Capcom-esque style as been aped to death and in some cases surpassed. Presented here in Ultimates format it is nice, if not... shiny. I fear as talented a colorist Christian Lichtner is (easily doing the lion's share of the work on this book), the pages appear over-rendered and heavily saturated with ink, and most fall into a dark, low-contrast mess. This may be a printing discrepancy, tho I have reason to believe it falls into the ever-growing category of digital artists who paint for a screen as opposed to ink. Compare the image here with the comic itself, if you are able. Any passionate printer worth his salt, or publisher who cared about the quality of their product, would reject the version that stacked the shelf by the dozens. Ink is the blood of print medium, and it must be revered as if flowing through one's own veins.

BONUS: Beaucoup Kevin's take on the matter is funny.

Age of Bronze I've recommended before, and will continue to do so. These collected versions are great gifts for those who would normally avoid comics and generally have no interest in such, but still read alot and would appriciate the craftmanship involved in both the art and writing. What author Eric Shanower presents is a graphically rich and sophisticated package supported by literary prowess and historical intrigue. The Age of Bronze books are most definitely highbrow and should never be ashamed of that fact, reading them counts towards the betterment of many many things, not the least of which is supporting such a monumental artistic endeavor.

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