The Spectre is just ace character design.
I’ll be honest David I did a Google image search of silver age covers and some of them are pretty busy in the thumbnails. Maybe overall better perhaps but even some Kirby ones have 15 characters on the front and you can’t see who any of them are.
Huh. Ok, I guess it’s variable then. Or possibly more down to who the artist is.
Probably the best era for being clear in a thumbnail was Jemas at Ultimate Marvel with those big character pieces every issue. Problem there was they were incredibly boring.
But you can tell all of them are ugly.
Nah. They’re just jacked up.
Kill Or Be Killed #20
I looked forward to this all day. This was a wait-for-a-quiet-moment, pour-yourself-a-beer-and-enjoy-it kind of comic book, so that’s what I did - and I liked it as much as I’d hoped.
I’m going to tread especially lightly on spoilers here, as I know some of us are reading this at different speeds and the last thing I want to do is ruin the experience of reading this final issue, or even this final arc. But what I can say is that this finale brings the story to a close in a way that’s perfectly fitting for the series.
So we get the playful narration that keeps us on our toes even when we think we have a handle on what’s going on; we get twists and turns that make us question what we thought we knew about this story and where it was heading; we get some smart criticism of the vigilante-superhero genre, and why it sometimes fails to satisfy in the long run; we get clever manipulation of comicbook conventions to create specific effects (here, there’s a repeated use of blurred text in dialogue to create a distancing effect and sense of detachedness); and we get a closing coda that shifts the focus of the story slightly, to lead us to what feels like a perfect final page.
And of course, the art! I’ll blur these images as they might be considered spoilers to varying degrees, but the issue doesn’t disappoint when it comes to striking imagery.
One feature of this series that I’ve really enjoyed is the full-page illustrations alongside a column of text, and they continue here, changing the pace and mood of the story at key points.
And providing the opportunity for some of Phillips’ best art in the issue.
It’s always bittersweet when a great series like this comes to an end, but it feels like Kill Or Be Killed ran for the right amount of time and has gone out on a high note - and I’d much rather that than a series fall into a dull holding pattern or limp to an overdue conclusion.
Plus, as ever, there’s the promise of more Brubaker and Phillips goodness to come.
I’ll be there on release day.
Sort of sequel to The Fade Out? Oh yeah.
It’s a pretty light week for me too. I think Man Of Steel #5 is the only thing I have, so I’m going to skip going to my local this week. Not to worry though, I still have lots to read.
I did pick up Flash #49 digitally; part 3 of “Flash War”. This was a cracking issue, as it definitively answers the age old question of who would win in a race between Superman and the Flash. And, also confirms which Flash is the fastest in pretty dramatic fashion. There’s a lot of emotion in this issue, as Wally points out the blatant hypocrisy of Barry’s reticence to help him. And, the ending is pretty epic, although I hate the multi coloured lanterns, and the implications of this issue stink in much the same manner. We’ll see how this goes.
Great art from Porter again. Gorgeous stuff.
P.s. if this series finishes with Wally broken and going to Sanctuary as rumoured I’m going to be mighty pissed. There has to be a happy ending to this story. There. Has. To. Be.
Some additional details on My Heroes Have Always Been Junkies from Brubaker’s newsletter:
So it’s set in the world of Criminal. I don’t think we knew that before.
Ooh, now I’m excited.
None of their non-Criminal works has ever worked for me.
Saga #53 is an issue that I think sums up the mixed feelings I have for the book. To begin at the end, there’s a killer cliffhanger that works as a genuinely shocking moment which made me pause to properly take it in, which is a good sign that a story has your attention.
But I think it’s more of a soap-opera interest these days, and there are often issues - like this one - where I don’t get a huge amount out of the story from page to page: it seems to exist more to build up to the big moments rather than being particularly interesting in its own right.
The art is always good-to-great, and there are usually a couple of laughs and fun ideas, but I just don’t have a strong sense of what the overall story is any more, what’s driving it forward and where things are going.
I’ll be interested to see how this arc concludes next issue. It may well decide whether I keep buying the book in singles. I’ve wavered over it several times in the past but never felt as ambivalent and almost disinterested as I do now.
Has there been any indication of whether there is an end in mind for Saga? I dropped it a while back as it felt like it was just buoying along. That was fine when there weren’t many good choices out there but it has a bit stiffer competition now.
It’s a good question. I get the feeling BKV wants it to run for a good while yet.
“Just buoying along” is a good description.
No. BKV has said he’ll keep doing it as long as Fiona Staples wants to, could be 100 issues plus.
I differ to many on Saga because it is exactly what I expected it would be, a meandering soap opera, it’s what BKV does and my first love in comics Claremont’s X-Men was a meandering soap opera too.
I think it frustrates people who are looking for a tight plot driven title but that’s never what I expected or really wanted from it so it remains top of my read list each time it comes out and can go 300 issues as far as I’m concerned.
Saga is just about perfect for library purchases, once those 75+ issues (collected) are published. It’s a long-term seller; doing okay to very well in periodical and with enough buzz, still, to be getting better known. Kind of like Astro City in the way it sells, perhaps. Both are quite wonderful in small doses and to binge!
I could handle it being a soap opera. It’s actually kind of what I was looking for. It just has a lot of cheap shots that get old after a while. I dropped Invincible for very similar reasons.
Checked out the debut issues of the Teen Titans and Superman 100-Page Comic Giants. They’re mostly reprints, but the new material is good. Superman’s has Jimmy Palmiotti writing Clark Kent being assigned to cover the aftermath of tornados in small town America. Teen Titans’s has Dan Jurgens with a Robin/Beast Boy/Starfire/Raven lineup. The reprints feature material going back to 2003, plus newer stuff like The Terrifics (which is terrific) and Sideways (Rocafort really shines in the ordinary high school sequences). Really happy DC is doing this.
Oh wow. They’re already out?