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The All New Comics Thread 2017+ Edition

Started by Small Man Big Horse, October 13, 2017, 05:58:40 PM

Previous topic - Next topic

Magnum Valentino

Quote from: Small Man Big Horse on May 25, 2022, 04:37:45 PMPicked up Elektra: Assassin and The Complete Nemesis The Warlock Volume One for four quid each today, as I HAVE AN ADDICTION AND NEED HELP, I'm really looking forward to the latter as I haven't read it since my teenage years, but I looked online to see how much Volume 2 is and annoyingly it seems to be going for silly money everywhere (£150+ on both Ebay and Amazon) while Volume 3 is a fairly normal £12-ish, does anyone know why that is? I've tried to find an answer online but haven't come up with anything yet.

Can you show me a picture of the edition you're looking for and I'll check the local comic shops next time I'm in the city, Belfast is usually good for still having copies of sought-after things cause no cunt knows what good for 'em.

Small Man Big Horse

Quote from: Mister Six on May 25, 2022, 07:52:21 PMCould just be that there was a recent print run of the first volume, so they're more accessible, and they haven't got around to the second yet. And there are more copies of the third knocking around because it didn't sell as much as the first...

That would make sense, and fingers crossed they'll do another run of the second volume, I would have thought that Nemesis would be considered to be one of the best series that they've ever published, and one that had a definite ending rather than going on and on for ever more like so many others.

Quote from: Magnum Valentino on May 25, 2022, 08:14:56 PMCan you show me a picture of the edition you're looking for and I'll check the local comic shops next time I'm in the city, Belfast is usually good for still having copies of sought-after things cause no cunt knows what good for 'em.

Oh wow, that's incredibly kind of you, and it's this:


Magnum Valentino


Small Man Big Horse

#1623
Quote from: Magnum Valentino on May 25, 2022, 08:44:35 PMDeadly, I'll keep my eyes peeled.

Thank you, it's very kind of you and enormously appreciated. And on that front:

Nemesis Vol.1 - This initially starts off as a sort of Future Shock story, and there's three separate stories before it's named "Nemesis The Warlock" and kicks off a proper. I'd forgotten just how funny these early stories were too, and christ, Kevin O'Neill's artwork is stunning. That might not be a surprise to many, but the amount of detail he packs in to every panel is incredible, and it's all beautiful to look at. 4.5/5

Spider-Man: Return Of The Black Cat - A real oddity this, the first two issues are written by Joe Kelly and sees Spider-Man catch up with the titular character, and they flirt and then fuck a lot, with Peter sure that the relationship will end terribly but going along with it anyway. They're a good read, nothing amazing but Peter's quips amuse and the Black Cat's  a very entertaining anti-hero, but then suddenly she disappears as after a brief interlude from J.M. DeMatteis and a story about a hairy clone of Peter Parker,  Marc Guggenheim takes over for three issues with a daft story about a scientist who injected himself with dinosaur DNA and now blames a different clone of Parker for the death of his family. Finally Joe Kelly returns for the last issue in the trade but it's just Spider-Man and Deadpool fighting each other and not really interesting, and again Black Cat's nowhere to be seen. If she wasn't the subject of the title it may have felt a bit less odd, but this is still a really uneven collection, and I'm not going to bother getting the next one in the series. 2/5

She Hulk Vol. 2 by Charles Soule - Another great six issues, the highlight is seeing a tiny Jen do battle with ants, but all of it is fantastic, I was especially fond of the courtroom battle against Matt Murdoch as well, and it really is an enormous shame Soule didn't get to continue the series. 4.25/5

Norton Canes

The Nemesis preludes and Book I are just phenomenal, up there with the very best strips 2000 AD has ever offered. The Terror Tube, Torquemada, Termight's crusade across the galaxy with the sole intent of wiping out alien species, Uncle Baal ("Gill Barker!" No, not that Baal), and the climactic episodes as Nemesis and Torquemada battle it out with increasing desperation... all underpinned by Pat Mills' subversive, splenetic scripts and Kevin O'Neill's belief-defyingly good artwork. All in the prog around the time of Judge Death Lives and the golden era of Strontium Dog. Good times.

letsgobrian

Quote from: Small Man Big Horse on May 26, 2022, 11:07:24 AMSpider-Man: Return Of The Black Cat - A real oddity this, the first two issues are written by Joe Kelly and sees Spider-Man catch up with the titular character, and they flirt and then fuck a lot, with Peter sure that the relationship will end terribly but going along with it anyway. They're a good read, nothing amazing but Peter's quips amuse and the Black Cat's  a very entertaining anti-hero, but then suddenly she disappears as after a brief interlude from J.M. DeMatteis and a story about a hairy clone of Peter Parker,  Marc Guggenheim takes over for three issues with a daft story about a scientist who injected himself with dinosaur DNA and now blames a different clone of Parker for the death of his family. Finally Joe Kelly returns for the last issue in the trade but it's just Spider-Man and Deadpool fighting each other and not really interesting, and again Black Cat's nowhere to be seen. If she wasn't the subject of the title it may have felt a bit less odd, but this is still a really uneven collection, and I'm not going to bother getting the next one in the series. 2/5

I remembered most of this from reading the Brand New Day era (weekly schedule, writer's room approach), but had no recollection of the description of the JM Dematteis story. Turns out that is not an Amazing Spider-Man issue, instead being issue 1 of a relaunched Web of Spider-Man.

The writer of Web of Spider-Man then immediately changed to Fred Van Lente, so guess that single Dematteis issue didn't really have a home with those either?

Anyway, if you run across collections of the recent Black Cat series from Jed Mackay, those are a much better use of the character. He smartly takes her character back to her very first appearance and reintroduces her burglar crew from ASM 194 that had been forgotten for decades.

Small Man Big Horse

Quote from: Norton Canes on May 26, 2022, 07:49:21 PMThe Nemesis preludes and Book I are just phenomenal, up there with the very best strips 2000 AD has ever offered. The Terror Tube, Torquemada, Termight's crusade across the galaxy with the sole intent of wiping out alien species, Uncle Baal ("Gill Barker!" No, not that Baal), and the climactic episodes as Nemesis and Torquemada battle it out with increasing desperation... all underpinned by Pat Mills' subversive, splenetic scripts and Kevin O'Neill's belief-defyingly good artwork. All in the prog around the time of Judge Death Lives and the golden era of Strontium Dog. Good times.

It really was a fantastic era, I did once own those issues after my sister's friend sold them to me ridiculously cheaply, but sadly I ended up selling them as well about a decade later.

Quote from: letsgobrian on May 26, 2022, 08:54:23 PMI remembered most of this from reading the Brand New Day era (weekly schedule, writer's room approach), but had no recollection of the description of the JM Dematteis story. Turns out that is not an Amazing Spider-Man issue, instead being issue 1 of a relaunched Web of Spider-Man.

The writer of Web of Spider-Man then immediately changed to Fred Van Lente, so guess that single Dematteis issue didn't really have a home with those either?

Anyway, if you run across collections of the recent Black Cat series from Jed Mackay, those are a much better use of the character. He smartly takes her character back to her very first appearance and reintroduces her burglar crew from ASM 194 that had been forgotten for decades.

I heard about the writer's room / weekly release schedule situation and it's definitely a bad idea, there doesn't feel like there's much continuity between the Kelly and Guggenheim stories at all, plus the art varies enormously too, the first two issues are superb but what comes afterwards didn't do it for me. And thanks for the suggestion about Jed Mackay, I'll add it to my ridiculously long Amazon wishlist!

Dayraven

QuoteI heard about the writer's room / weekly release schedule situation and it's definitely a bad idea
It works pretty well in 52, which I'm reading as part of a binge of Grant Morrison's work on the DC Infinite app. There are a couple of differences that help make it work, though — each writer mostly takes charge of their own strands in a many-threaded plot, instead of each writing about the same central character, and the limited run gives it clearer shape.

willbo

Quote from: Mister Six on May 25, 2022, 05:48:18 PMIf stores selling on Amazon run out of a particular book and can't get more copies (typically if it's out of print), they'll jack up the prices to ridiculous amounts so they can keep the listing (and its associated reviews) open while dissuading anyone from placing an order.

If someone does place an order at a ridiculous price, they can put in the effort needed to buy it for, say, £100 from a dealer and still make £50 profit.

eBay I don't know about - could be that the sellers are basing their prices on Amazon's.

I never knew that. I thought they all just put the highest price on amazon in the hope that people there are more stupid/desperate and put the realistic price on ebay.

letsgobrian

The recent Beyond story they did in Spider-Man went back the writer's room weekly format, and while it was more consistent in the overarching plot, it was probably too long.

The Avengers: No Surrender and Avengers: No Road Home series are much better examples of Marvel doing a weekly comic in the style of 52. It probably helped that Mark Waid had worked on 52 and Al Ewing had delivered plenty of Thrill Power for 2000AD.

Small Man Big Horse

Quote from: Dayraven on May 27, 2022, 10:51:27 AMIt works pretty well in 52, which I'm reading as part of a binge of Grant Morrison's work on the DC Infinite app. There are a couple of differences that help make it work, though — each writer mostly takes charge of their own strands in a many-threaded plot, instead of each writing about the same central character, and the limited run gives it clearer shape.

I guess I'm not against the idea completely (bar the cost!) but it definitely needs to be well organised in advance (like it sounds Morrison was able to do) rather than just because they want to make a sod load of money!

Quote from: letsgobrian on May 27, 2022, 01:05:56 PMThe recent Beyond story they did in Spider-Man went back the writer's room weekly format, and while it was more consistent in the overarching plot, it was probably too long.

The Avengers: No Surrender and Avengers: No Road Home series are much better examples of Marvel doing a weekly comic in the style of 52. It probably helped that Mark Waid had worked on 52 and Al Ewing had delivered plenty of Thrill Power for 2000AD.

That's interesting to hear, and I am very fond of both Waid and Ewing, so will have to check them out when I can afford to.

Magnum Valentino

Don't forget, Spider-Man would have been published weekly as far back as the 1990s (if not earlier), presuming that Amazing, Spectacular, Web of and 'adjectiveless' Spider-Man never came out on the same day. Even in the 1970s he had three monthly titles - Amazing, Spec and Marvel Team Up (which was cancelled to make room for Web in the 80s).

During Brand New Day, I think some of the other satellite titles were cancelled to account for Amazing going weekly. So really, you always had different creative teams working on those titles, the only difference was they ran them all as Amazing Spider-Man instead of as different titles.

During the mid 1990s Clone Saga, there was a period where single-issue stories were done away with and the endless 4-parters were split between titles. The Ben Reilly Scarlet Spider stuff was covered in Spider-Man and Web of, and Peter's stuff appeared in Amazing and Spectacular. Additionally, Marvel was still running Spider-Man Unlimited 3 or 4 times a year, plus endless Annuals and limited series and what have you. Web was cancelled and replaced by Sensational Spider-Man when Ben took over full time, and which was home to an excellent half-reprinted run by Todd Dezago and Mike Weiringo. Even then, they ran Untold Tales of Spider-Man for two years to appease the folks who missed Peter in the webs. It's never been easy collecting Spider-Man. I had a go at it once with a big Excel spreadsheet but once I stopped reading towards the end of Slott's run (around 'Worldwide', I think), I abandoned it. Since then I see they've made some attempts at getting the brilliant Paul Jenkins stuff out in trades before giving up, and they never did a second Tombstone TPB for those Spectacular issues and that would have been an easy sell, so it's frustrating.

Small Man Big Horse

Quote from: Magnum Valentino on May 27, 2022, 02:12:40 PMDon't forget, Spider-Man would have been published weekly as far back as the 1990s (if not earlier), presuming that Amazing, Spectacular, Web of and 'adjectiveless' Spider-Man never came out on the same day. Even in the 1970s he had three monthly titles - Amazing, Spec and Marvel Team Up (which was cancelled to make room for Web in the 80s).

During Brand New Day, I think some of the other satellite titles were cancelled to account for Amazing going weekly. So really, you always had different creative teams working on those titles, the only difference was they ran them all as Amazing Spider-Man instead of as different titles.

During the mid 1990s Clone Saga, there was a period where single-issue stories were done away with and the endless 4-parters were split between titles. The Ben Reilly Scarlet Spider stuff was covered in Spider-Man and Web of, and Peter's stuff appeared in Amazing and Spectacular. Additionally, Marvel was still running Spider-Man Unlimited 3 or 4 times a year, plus endless Annuals and limited series and what have you. Web was cancelled and replaced by Sensational Spider-Man when Ben took over full time, and which was home to an excellent half-reprinted run by Todd Dezago and Mike Weiringo. Even then, they ran Untold Tales of Spider-Man for two years to appease the folks who missed Peter in the webs. It's never been easy collecting Spider-Man. I had a go at it once with a big Excel spreadsheet but once I stopped reading towards the end of Slott's run (around 'Worldwide', I think), I abandoned it. Since then I see they've made some attempts at getting the brilliant Paul Jenkins stuff out in trades before giving up, and they never did a second Tombstone TPB for those Spectacular issues and that would have been an easy sell, so it's frustrating.

Ah, I wasn't aware that quite so many Spider-Man series were running all at the same time, though I tended to only dip in and out of Marvel comics back in the late eighties / early nineties where many a weekend was spent travelling to The Phantom Zone in Croydon, and was more in to DC/Vertigo. I've since read about a hundred issues of Ultimate Spider-Man and really enjoyed them, but due to lack of funds I doubt I'll ever read any more apart from what I can pick up in charity shops.

Magnum Valentino

Your charity shops sound like they're really well stocked for interesting and actually decent books. I never see stuff like that over here. When I lived in England I used to frequent the Manchester Oxfam that was on the same road as Forbidden Planet and round the corner from Travelling Man, and marvel not only at the regularity with which they'd have rare books (Ennis Punisher hardcovers, original Alan Moore Marvelman issues etc) but at the very canny prices attached to them. Someone in that shop knew very well what their stock was worth.

Ultimate Spider-Man is still the one I recommend to everyone. I've read almost everything - every issue of ASM at least, and huge chunks of the other titles - but USM from the first issue up until the last pre-Secret Wars run before Marvel folded the Ultimate line into their main 'universe' is one of the most completely satisfying comics experiences and in Peter's case a very rare thing - a superhero series that tells a complete story with a definitive ending.

Small Man Big Horse

I am definitely very lucky, I used to live in Kilburn and it was very rare for them to get anything in, but now I'm in Walthamstow I'm regularly picking up some real gems. It does help that there's seven charity shops in the area, and thugh two of them often price things ridiculously high (British Heart Foundation and Scope, and I don't think either quite know what they're doing as I've seen books which go for three quid on ebay priced at £10, and sometimes they get it wrong and sell something for £3 which is worth, say, £15),  fortunately all of the others seem to be £4 max, and a couple are just one or two quid. Nothing seems to stay there for long though, Scope had a full set of Preacher for between £4.50 and £7 a trade paperback, I've read it twice so wasn't tempted, but I went in the next day to see that someone else had bought them all.

Quote from: Magnum Valentino on May 28, 2022, 06:40:22 AMUltimate Spider-Man is still the one I recommend to everyone. I've read almost everything - every issue of ASM at least, and huge chunks of the other titles - but USM from the first issue up until the last pre-Secret Wars run before Marvel folded the Ultimate line into their main 'universe' is one of the most completely satisfying comics experiences and in Peter's case a very rare thing - a superhero series that tells a complete story with a definitive ending.

I feel a little frustrated that I never read the final sixty or so issues of Ultimate Spider-Man, (this was back when I was happy to read comics online, which is no longer really the case). so it's something I hope to revisit one day.

willbo

bought a TPB of the first ever Deadpool comics, the first appearance and the first 2 miniseries. Bit disappointed to be honest. Compared to the wild "anything can happen" surreality the character would become known for, they're pretty bog standard war/merc comics of the time. It it wasn't for his sassy banter it could be GI Joe or something.

Mister Six

Oh yeah, OG Deadpool sucks, sorry. I think it wasn't until Fabian Nicieza started writing him in The Circle Chase that he started to become funny.

Mister Six

Anyway, I finished up Batman Omnibus Vol. 1, and it was better than I remember it. The three sinister Batmen story still felt kind of undercooked and drowned out by everything else, and the editorial-mandated crossover issues with the Return of Ra's Al Ghul event feel very begrudgingly made, but the dialogue crackles, the trademark Morrison vim is there, and all of the stuff with the League of Batmen and their villains is loads of fun. Reading the Black Casebook definitely helped clear up a few things that confused me when it first came out, and some of the pages have been redrawn for clarity (farewell that weird black centipede thing that wrapped itself around Batman for no reason and was never referred to in dialogue).

The art is variable, with the early pages by Andy Kubert (son of Joe) being very dynamic but awkwardly blocked, so it's difficult to follow quite what's happening, but mostly it's fine, with the occasional stunner by JH Williams III. Next volume has Frank Quietly doing the Dick Greyson/Damian Wayne Batman/Robin combo and Frazer Irving doing the Return of Bruce Wayne, so that's got me hyped as hell.

First, though, I need to re-read Final Crisis, which comes between the first two Omnibuses...

Small Man Big Horse

The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen Vol. 1 and 2 - An enormously enjoyable romp, and if anything the second volume is even better than the first. My only complaints are the amount of rape in it
Spoiler alert
(Griffn and the school girls, and his own eventual fate)
[close]
and I know it's something that has been discussed at length in the past, but christ, I wish he could go one volume without using it as a way of torturing someone, and,
Spoiler alert
The Invisible Man getting school girls pregnant
[close]
is mainly played for laughs which I felt very uncomfortable about.

Oh yeah, and the text story at the end of volume 1 is fairly great, and I love the Lovecraftian elements, but it really was repetitive. I don't know if that was Moore replicating the style of serialised Victorian fiction, but each chapter spent too long reintroducing characters, etc.  I started reading the text at the end of Volume 2 and the guide to unusual events around the world, and struggled with that a bit, there's some amusing ideas there but at points I thought it felt like Alan waffling on and showing off as to how clever he is, and there's so fucking much of it, does anyone if it really matters if I read it or not?

samadriel

Top Cow deal at Humble Bundle at the moment; I'm not that familiar with their stuff (lots of undressed 90s female superheroes with cybernetic bits?),  but it's got 7 volumes of Stjepan Sejic's naughty slice-of-life BDSM yarn Sunstone, which is a lot of fun, and Sejic's art is great.  Really I just bought the bundle so I could reread the Cyblade origin issue of Cyber Force,  which I'd read as a ķid. So sleazy!  Why is Cyblade's sensei constantly wearing lingerie? (Pretty good lingerie though, I guess the artist tucked into lots of catalogues in his free time)   And the dialogue is awful '90s stuff; I remember thinking it was pretty bad back then, so I didn't feel any nostalgia cracking in the cold light of day or anything. I'm looking forward to wallowing in the rest of Cyber Force now though,  just to see if the Cyblade origin is representative of Silvestri at his Silvestriest.

letsgobrian

Due to a power cut, I finally caught up on Asadora, the current Naoki Urasawa series. It's a play on the NHK morning dramas that began in 1961 (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asadora) as it follows the life story of pilot Asa Asada. With the added twist of the presence a kaiju.

So far it's mainly been set in 1959 when Asa first encounters the kaiju aged 12, and then in 1964 against the backdrop of the Tokyo Olympics, which is where Urasawa's storytelling skills kick into gear. Multiple story threads weave around related themes as the gentrification of Tokyo, the JSDF, pro-wrestling, the music industry and more get drawn into this tale of woman vs. giant sea monster.

There's one more volume yet to be released in English, then I suspect there'll be a bit of a wait as I believe Urasawa is taking lengthy breaks between arcs. But as I'm still waiting for an editor brave enough to release his Davinci Code meets Mickey Mouse epic Billy Bat in English, I'm happy to wait a bit for Asadora.

Small Man Big Horse

This month I've made myself stop buying graphic novels online so I might be able to have some sort of a holiday this year(!), but these are a few things I've found in Charity Shops over the last couple of months.

Batman Aliens - A graphic novel featuring two Batman vs Aliens stories, one Batman and Superman vs Aliens and Predators, and one WildC.A.T.S. vs Aliens. I was hoping this would be silly fun and to be fair the first one is, which feels like a Predator movie except that it's got Bats and the Aliens in it. Still, it plays out in an amusing way, and seeing Batman punching Aliens and not getting killed while everyone else does is nicely amusing. The second Batman Aliens story isn't as good as it involves a mad scientist type making half Alien half human monsters, involving some of the Arkham Asylum inmates, and once again it's absolutely unbelievable that Batman survives, even if he does have an Iron Man-esque suit on. The Batman, Superman etc decides to make the Predators sympathetic and has a handy volcano to sort things out, and this suffers from what looked to me like weirdly cgi art, some of which is great but some of which is horrible, and the story is bloated and weirdly dull considering what it involves. Haven't read the final WildC.A.T.S. one as it's written by Warren Ellis, I probably will just to finish this off, and then it'll be up on Ebay as apparently the collection is worth selling.

Peter Panzerfaust (issues 1 - 3) - Reimagines Peter Pan as fighting in the second world war, rescuing some orphans who become the lost boys, and there's lots of nazi punching action. It's written by Kurtis J. Wiebe, whose Rat Queens I loved, but this is lacking something and I'm not sure what. I might stick with it, there are only five volumes in total, but the next two issues need to up its game for me to do so.

Scarlet Vol. 1 - Brian Michael Bendis is very angry about police corruption and so uses this story of a girl whose boyfriend was unfairly murdered by a drug addled cop to rant about it. This first volume was written back in 2010 and so while aspects feel a bit on the nose, I did really quite like this, the frustration with the police is mostly well written, and though there's the occasionally dodgy bit I'll definitely be getting the next volume.

Seaguy Vol. 1 - I loved this weird but sweet natured superhero world, and it's a real shame that the sequel hasn't been given a trade paperback, and that we're still waiting for the third and final volume despite Morrison supposedly having given Cameron Stewart the script years ago. If he ever does finish it I'll buy it, but I'm not holding my breath.

Fear Agent Vol.1 - The final two issues perked my interest, but for the time being this is going on the back burner, and might just be something I return to when I've caught up with a whole bunch of other series that are currently hurting my bank balance.

Ringside Volume 1 by Joe Keatinge - From the writer of Glory comes this quite interesting tale about one wrestler at the start of his career, one towards the end, and one at the very, very end, and it's the latter we mostly follow as he tries to discover what happened to his ex-boyfriend. It tackles the macho element quite nicely, and I found myself liking the characters, but on the downside the art isn't all that. Still, there's only two more volumes so I'll definitely finish this at some point vaguely soonish.

Judge Dredd Casefiles 14 - This is initially all about Dredd clone Kraken, and then the sisters of Judge Death descending upon the city in the epic Necropolis saga.
Spoiler alert
After building up Kraken taking over from Dredd fairly carefully his failure seems all too rushed, I would have much preferred it if he'd stuck around for a year, even survived some other mega epic, before Necropolis came along and fucked him up, it would have made for a far more interesting tale. At least the Sisters are great villains, and have an amusingly odd sense of humour, but Death and co don't get a lot to do and the ending is rushed too, with it all over within Dredd reaching Mega City one in about five issues.
[close]
I know this is all very negative for a story I really did like in places, but it's one mega epic that would have benefitted from being even longer.

The Sandman Vol. 1 - Minor aspects of this are a bit clunky, and I'm glad Sam Keith buggered off fairly early on as while some of his art is stunning some didn't quite work for me, but otherwise this is fantastic stuff.

bgmnts

Quote from: Small Man Big Horse on May 29, 2022, 10:45:25 AMThe League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen Vol. 1 and 2 - An enormously enjoyable romp, and if anything the second volume is even better than the first. My only complaints are the amount of rape in it
Spoiler alert
(Griffn and the school girls, and his own eventual fate)
[close]
and I know it's something that has been discussed at length in the past, but christ, I wish he could go one volume without using it as a way of torturing someone, and,
Spoiler alert
The Invisible Man getting school girls pregnant
[close]
is mainly played for laughs which I felt very uncomfortable about.

Oh yeah, and the text story at the end of volume 1 is fairly great, and I love the Lovecraftian elements, but it really was repetitive. I don't know if that was Moore replicating the style of serialised Victorian fiction, but each chapter spent too long reintroducing characters, etc.  I started reading the text at the end of Volume 2 and the guide to unusual events around the world, and struggled with that a bit, there's some amusing ideas there but at points I thought it felt like Alan waffling on and showing off as to how clever he is, and there's so fucking much of it, does anyone if it really matters if I read it or not?

I think the first use of rape is just to demonstrate that he is not a very nice man. Which is true to the book in my memory as he does become a bit of a megolomaniac. Presumably the second instance of it is a direct reference to the first instance, an old school type of justice that the character would have been very much into.


But yes Moore can be a waffler but i think he's a man who puts a lot of work and research into his books so it's only right to show that off a bit.

Quote from: Small Man Big Horse on June 08, 2022, 10:53:28 AMJudge Dredd Casefiles 14 - This is initially all about Dredd clone Kraken, and then the sisters of Judge Death descending upon the city in the epic Necropolis saga.
Spoiler alert
After building up Kraken taking over from Dredd fairly carefully his failure seems all too rushed, I would have much preferred it if he'd stuck around for a year, even survived some other mega epic, before Necropolis came along and fucked him up, it would have made for a far more interesting tale. At least the Sisters are great villains, and have an amusingly odd sense of humour, but Death and co don't get a lot to do and the ending is rushed too, with it all over within Dredd reaching Mega City one in about five issues.
[close]
I know this is all very negative for a story I really did like in places, but it's one mega epic that would have benefitted from being even longer.


I don't disagree with your criticisms of Necropolis, for me it does fall short of expectations given the potential scope of the story. But thought I should mention that it should be read in conjunction with The Dead Man, a Cormac McCarthy-esque Cursed Earth tale also written by Wagner and drawn by the great John Ridgway, which pulls a fantastic twist at the end when it's revealed that
Spoiler alert
the disfigured amnesiac protagonist is in fact Dredd himself after having been wounded in a confrontation with the Sisters.
[close]

Small Man Big Horse

Quote from: bgmnts on June 08, 2022, 10:57:30 AMI think the first use of rape is just to demonstrate that he is not a very nice man. Which is true to the book in my memory as he does become a bit of a megolomaniac. Presumably the second instance of it is a direct reference to the first instance, an old school type of justice that the character would have been very much into.

I hear you on both counts, and in the hands of another writer I might not have complained, but I'm just getting sick to death of Moore using rape in every bloody thing.

QuoteBut yes Moore can be a waffler but i think he's a man who puts a lot of work and research into his books so it's only right to show that off a bit.

I think that's fine in the comic itself, but the text story is annoyingly repetitive in a way which feels tedious, and the guide to unusual locations in the second volume is blandly written. I do love Moore, but I still think he needs to be reigned in sometimes.

Quote from: Ron Maels Moustache on June 08, 2022, 11:34:48 AMI don't disagree with your criticisms of Necropolis, for me it does fall short of expectations given the potential scope of the story. But thought I should mention that it should be read in conjunction with The Dead Man, a Cormac McCarthy-esque Cursed Earth tale also written by Wagner and drawn by the great John Ridgway, which pulls a fantastic twist at the end when it's revealed that
Spoiler alert
the disfigured amnesiac protagonist is in fact Dredd himself after having been wounded in a confrontation with the Sisters.
[close]

Yeah, I was disappointed "The Dead Man" wasn't included in the collection, I did read it when it was originally published in 2000AD, so remembered the twist (and what a shock it was back then), but can imagine it might be confusing to anyone who hadn't read it before.

13 schoolyards

I think with Necropolis the whole point is that without Dredd, Mega-City 1 just falls apart - and once Dredd comes back, the city rights itself (well, he rights it) pretty much straight away. By this stage of the series there's no real point in having a big drawn out climax: once Dredd is back, he'll save the day - and he does. The story is about Dredd being brought low by doubt in himself and the system and turning his back on the city, and once he overcomes that and realises he's needed, the rest of the story is just mopping things up.

(the version of this story where there's a big drawn-out struggle with Dredd battling the rulers of the city is The Day the Law Died / Judge Cal)

It's interesting that at this stage of the series all the "other" Dredds - original Rico, Kraken - turned out to be flawed compared to the original, whereas now there's a new Rico who's proven up to the task, Dolman (a Dredd who didn't want to be a judge) is a good egg, and so on. There's more of a sense now that Dredd isn't unique, whereas the whole point of Necropolis is that nobody can do what he does and nobody can take his place.

Wagner's always had a somewhat idiosyncratic approach to pacing the mega-epics though. City of the Damned was cut short when he (and Alan Grant) decided it wasn't working, and much later on Day of Chaos pretty much does everything it's going to do before we actually get to the "Day of Chaos".

Mister Six

#1646
Quote from: Small Man Big Horse on June 08, 2022, 10:53:28 AMSeaguy Vol. 1 - I loved this weird but sweet natured superhero world, and it's a real shame that the sequel hasn't been given a trade paperback, and that we're still waiting for the third and final volume despite Morrison supposedly having given Cameron Stewart the script years ago. If he ever does finish it I'll buy it, but I'm not holding my breath.

Given that Cameron's been accused of grooming teenagers, that seems unlikely.

My Batman voyages have taken me through Final Crisis and Grant Morrison's Batman Omnibus, Vol. 2.

It might just be that I've already it three or four times before, or that I've read too much Morrison, but Final Crisis hangs together a lot better than its reputation as a convoluted and fragmented load of pretentious toss might indicate. It probably helps that this is the DC Essentials edition, which includes the relevant issues of Batman (also reprinted in the Batman Omnibus, Vol. 1), and the Superman and Submit issues that were also written by Morrison and that complete the story.

The basic idea is a great one: what if evil won, and the good guys didn't even know? The body of Orion, the New God of light whose role is to fight Darkseid, the New God of all evil, is found dead in the trash outside a Gotham strip joint. The Green Lanterns seal off the entire planet as a crime scene, unaware that Darkseid is down there, inhabiting the body of Boss Dark Side, a crime lord who's kidnapping superpowered children for nefarious means.

As the story picks up pace, the DC universe's major heroes are waylaid one by one and the corruptive effects of Darkseid and his allies unravels the very fabric of the universe - while, beyond it, something even more grisly threatens the entire multiverse.

Morrison's love for the DC Universe shines through, and there's a real sense of joy as he deploys not just the big JLA guns, but also Kirby's New Gods, Morrison's own Frankenstein, a smattering of classic supervillains and a few new creations, including a bunch of Japanese superhero wannabes looking for their first real adventure. Even Captain Carrot and the Zoo Crew are summoned at the end.

As the threat grows and reality itself begins to collapse, Morrison's storytelling becomes deliberately more choppy and disjointed, but never incoherent, and the only real criticism I have is that a lot of the goofier/niche characters that get built up towards the start end up taking a back seat once the big boys (and girl) come back to kick ten shades of shit out of Darkseid.

One of the frustrating things about Morrison's superhero works is that they so frequently introduce a million great ideas that are then squandered by subpar talent and careless editors. It's what makes Multiversity and Superman And The Authority - two of Morrison's later DC yarns - seem so throwaway; you can't invest too heavily in them because they'll never reach a satisfying conclusion.

Thankfully that doesn't apply to Final Crisis, which came directly off the back of 52 (co-written by Morrison, along with a few other folks) and Seven Soldiers, and flows nicely into Morrison's fantastic Batman run, making it feel weighty and meaningful.

Speaking of which, Batman Omnibus Vol. 2 picks up in the wake of Final Crisis, with
Spoiler alert
Bruce Wayne blasted by Darkseid's Omega Sanction and former Nightwing Dick Grayson taking the mantle as the new Batman, accompanied by a sulky and unimpressed Damian Wayne continuing as Robin.
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It's a fantastic shift in the tone of the book, with a lighter Batman and a mean and grumpy little Robin inverting the usual dynamic (duo), while a plethora of hideous and bizarre villains emerge to do battle, along with the mysterious true-crime author Oberon Sexton. The art is mostly a massive step up from the first volume, with Frank Quitely, Frazer Irving and JG Jones all turning in some top work (and a few other hacks turning in disappointingly subpar toss between, but you can't have everything - and given that this is Morrison, it's hard not to suspect that it's just down to the scripts being turned in late, which was apparently what did for Igor Kordey on their New X-Men).

Morrison's writing soars to meet the best of the art, and the fallout from Final Crisis is quite deftly woven into the overarcing Batman storyline, complementing the gothic horror vibes with possibly supernatural strangeness. Top stuff. Can't wait for Vol. 3!

madhair60

Quote from: Mister Six on June 08, 2022, 04:49:09 PM...along with the mysterious true-crime author Sexton Blake.

not quite but hee hee

Mister Six


madhair60

No, lol, sorry, I mean he's Oberon Sexton. Sexton Blake is the fictional detective