Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Pierre Speaks: I don't love comics!

I don't love comics!!


How can this be?!

Me... the co-co-creator along with RAB and Jim of "The World's Greatest Comic Book Reader File"?!

How can I not love comics??

Years ago.... I would have said that I love comics. But I came to realise that I do not love comics. I love certain comics. Mostly those from the late 70s or early 80s.

A few things made me go through this "paragdim shift".

First when I read JLA/Avengers. When I read that mini-series.... I felt something that I had not felt in a long time reading comics. I had tons of fun reading it. The comic had tons of content. Each elements (story, artwork, history) was dense and rich in a way that I had not seen in quite some time in a comic. There was much more material in only one issue of JLA/Avengers then in the entire Weadon/Cassaday Astonishing X-Men run, or an entire Ultimates TPB.

Then when I bought the Essential Avengers volume 4. It was good in a way that is difficult to describe. It had all the excitement, action, energetic artwork, and so many other stuff that any good comic should have. But excitement, action and energetic artwork has been missing in most comics for some time now. In this era of "decompression" or "photo-tracing", excitement is a rare thing in most comics these days sadly. :(

John Buscema and Tom Palmer's artwork was pure joy to look at. Together, their work was pure magic. Not that what Sal and everyone else on art duty did in the comic were not awesome too, but John and Tom together were MORE THEN AWESOME!! They were AWESOMER!! ;)

I had never read those Avengers tales before buying the Essential Avengers volume 4 (except maybe the Kree/Skrull War in an earlier TPB just a few years before). Sadly as a kid, although the Avengers were translated here in Quebec, for some reason a good chunk of Avengers comics were skipped and never translated. So I read those Avengers tale for the first time in that volume. And I am sure glad I did.... it was much too good.

So you could say that I have been mostly a back issues or essential/showcase reader since JLA/Avengers.

Although some recent comics still catch my attention.

The best comic I have read in a long time HAS to be New Frontier. That comic is good on so many level... Loved it. The DVD adaptation was not bad either.... but the comic, especially the Absolute edition, is infinitely better.

The Green Lantern/Sinestro War HAS to be the best event in a long time. Now THAT was quite a pleasant surprise.

Booster Gold... with the Blue and Gold, that is... pure gold. ;)


Dynamo 5

Project Superpowers and Wild Cards.

And of course... "Flashback Universe Presents". ;)


Caine said...

Dynamo5 is great, and we need it now more than ever as TITANS...well it just isn't great. Yeah, we'll say that.

Anonymous said...

I'm afraid my mind's all mixed up over this sort of thing now. I don't find mainstream hero comics exciting anymore for all the reasons you mention yet I wonder if the thrill I still get from reading 60s-70s stuff in Essentials or old back issues is more to do with nostalgic memories and the fact that I was 9 rather than the 44 I am now, than the comics being actually better.

Unknown said...

I think part of what works about that era is that in a way you had a nice equilibrium. The stories had moved away from a lot of the goofyness of the Silver Age and out from under the Comics Code but creators weren't yet required to worship at the altar of DKR and Watchmen. There's not the grim n' gore event mentality. Good guys could still be good, bad guys could still be bad but both were human. Basically, the stories are played serious but still fantastic and bombastic. It's dramatic but also comicbooky in the best sense of the term if that makes sense.

Pierre Villeneuve said...

Mat; I think you hit the nail straight on the head.

It did have a nice mix of realism and fantastic.

As oppose to what is seen as realistic right now.

Although some of the supposedly more realistic stuff is not so realistic to me (ex; Captain America with HUGE scales on his armor, when even we can have an armor with scales much smaller, in a world where adamantium exists, he could have had an adamantium chainmail or something).

But it may be just me. ;)

MattComix said...

Trust me, it's not just you. ;) I understand what they're trying to do with something like that but I think the point should be more about bringing a fantastic character to life rather than trying over rationalize their visuals into some narrow definition of realism.

I'm also a guy who would like to see Batman's white eyeslits be used in live-action. :P

Jim Shelley said...

@Caine - sigh, DC really wasted a great opportunity with TITANS, didn't they?

@Wil - I'm like you in that I wonder about whether my preference for the old school stuff is based on their simpler stories or nostalgic feelings. I will say this: I often find myself reading comics from that era that I've never read before, so I think it's more than just fond memories that makes me enjoy those comics.

@Matt - I think you are on target. In the 70's you had guys like Gerber and Starlin playing around with adult themes in their comics that was refreshing in a way that doesn't seem to work as well nowdays.

@Pierre - Great article. Now gets to drawing you scallywag! ;)

@mattcomix - eyeslits on Batman would be cool, but no actor would ever go for it I'm afraid.


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