Saturday, August 4, 2007

Blog Positivity Day...

Rascally Heidi Meeley at Comic Fairplay has put the word out for Blog Positivity Day just to counter some of that negative comics backlash we might be feeling towards the industry. See here for the details.

Well, most of my special comic book moments have already been mentioned in this blog, but I guess I’ve got a few things I'd like to speak to.

Right now I am reading 52 via trade paperback. I decided not to pickup the individual issues, and I discovered it was worth the wait. The tight plotting demanded by the original weekly schedule and the ability to read each story one after another, makes for a satisfying comics experience. Much like having the DVDs to a whole season of a beloved TV show. 52 actually reads like the third season of a series, with Identity Crisis, Countdown to Infinite Crisis, Infinite Crisis and a myriad of other mini-series and issues being the second season (none of this impedes enjoyment though). Of Course the first season would have to be the rest of DC comics history, and Paul Levtiz, in the first story afterword, basically says that 52 is a collaboration across time with all the creators that have ever worked at DC over the years. That’s another thing that I like about the trades too, each issue gets and afterword.

I had given up on crossover stories. I was disappointed with the way Infinite Crisis played out and found most of the lead in and lead out mini-series unsatisfying with little or no story resolutions. I know the ultimate end of the 52 series, that the multiverse is back with 52 alternate universes, but that knowledge isn’t ruining it for me. In fact that’s the reason I decided to pick it up in the first place. I’m an alternate universe kinda guy. Only the first two trades are out now, so the whole series could go to crap but I got the feeling it doesn’t.

After all this blabbing the real positive thing I actually wanted to talk about was the depiction of Batwoman. I remember last year when there was this entire hullabaloo about her being a lesbian. News story after news story speaking about how sensational it was. I groaned to myself thinking it was another gimmick. Well, all these months later I’ve discovered it was really well done and the sensationalism came from the news organizations themselves rather than DC. What really worked for me was the meeting between Renee Montoya and Kate Kane in week 7; the look in their eyes, and the recognition of a deep history between the two really sold the scene for me. I’m a fan of Love and Rockets and the exchange between the two really borrows some of that old school, girl love from Las Locas.

A few other comic book moments:

Volume 12 of the Chronicles of Conan. I’ve read the original Queen of the Black Coast story by Howard, but the death of Bêlit in Roy Thomas’ comic adaptation still broke my heart. This trade clinched it for me that Conan the Barbarian is the best mainstream comic book of the 1970s (IMHO).

I am really happy that Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew is getting a new miniseries and past issues are being collected in the Showcase trade.

I have to mention She-Hulk #20 that just came out. That has got to be one of the best covers ever. On top of that, Dan Slott ties up most of the loose ends from his run, which is much appreciated. Most of the book is exposition, but it’s the most entertaining exposition I’ve ever read. Weird Huh!

I’m totally stoked for the Great Disaster collection as well. I’ve always wanted to read the Atomic Knights stories and Hercules Unbound as well. Wild and Wahoo post-apocalyptic adventures are the best!



Nick said...

*sigh* only one more issue of She-Hulk for Mr. Slott, and then Peter David takes it over....I am gonna miss Slott on this one.

James Meeley said...

Well, sounds like, at least in your case, it's good to be a comic fan right now, with so many good things happening or coming soon.

I have to agree that 52 was certainly much better than a lot of the critics who berated it and the media who sensationalized aspects of it, give it credit for. Glad you gave DC an open mind when you checked out the trades. :)

Swinebread said...

nick - Yeah, he brought She-Hulk back alright. I'll miss him on this title too.

james - Well it's good to be a fan for some things, marvel is rather icky right now and has been for awhile. 52 I think was treated somewhat like a TV show and thus the writing was better than average as there was a team working on it.

But Most of the stuff from the big two that I'm real excited about are collections of past stuff.

I'll wait for the hype to die down to see if the current series are really worth it and then pick up the trade.