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Author Topic: Whats everyone reading?  (Read 851562 times)

Dandontdare

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7020 on: 05 February, 2022, 03:42:20 PM »
Daredevil Yellow

A rather poignant story of Daredevil's earliest days, told in one big flashback. How Matt lost his Dad, how he met Karen Page, how his friendship with Foggy Nelson suffered a crisis, the latter falling in love with Karen etc. Owl has a minor role, but manages to utter perhaps the cheesiest, stupid, yet amusingly cracking line I ever heard from a supervillain. Mosaically constructed plot overshadows coherence of the same, but I find the story quite easy to follow. And could be interesting read for newcomers.
I think it was decent for rain afternoon, but I cannot stomach Loeb's dry prose and less Sale's impressionist art.

I like this series - I thought there were only 3, but just learned that in addition to Hulk:Grey and SpiderMan:Blue ther's one I missed - Capt America:White

milstar

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7021 on: 12 February, 2022, 08:00:57 PM »
Power & Glory

I appreciate Howard Chaykin as a creator. He could be terrific or terrible, but I don't think there was anyone else as audacious as is he in the field. No one else did deconstruction of already established properties like him. The Shadow, Blackhawk, Twilight, his Elseworlds stories, and now Power & Glory.
Here ol' Howard pisses on the superhero concept, pop culture, politics, and political correctness, through sharp-edged satire and self-referential meta humour.

As it goes, NIA director Malcolm LeStrange determined that "Japs make stereos, while Krauts make hot cars," leaving the US to develop something already done too well. The answer is obvious - a superhero. And Power & Glory offers a slightly different spin on the theme. Enter Alan Powell, ideal candidate; narcissistic, cowardly NIA operative, pervert who is afraid of being touched. The latter comes into full expression when he masturbates while watching two hookers frolicking, then declining the offer to join them with "no, who knows where you've been." It cracked me up so much, it still holds inside me.
That's where Michael Gorski steps in, Powell's total opposite. Gorski is a proto-1950s cynical, world-weary, but very efficient NIA agent and, albeit reluctantly, agrees to help Uncle Sam to keep the superhero product flowing. Plus, Gorski is also Jewish, and this is referenced throughout the whole book (which I can't help but consider this was self-insert on the Chaykin's behalf). And like the title says, one has all the power; the other has all the glory. The only problem is - they hate each other's guts.

What keeps this four-issue series from being stellar are the narrative choices. Chaykin often sacrifices narrative in favour of ideas. As a result, the plot itself largely makes no sense. The comic devotes considerable time to side characters who only relate to the infamous duo in very superficial ways. The main antagonist (whose part plays more like a tertiary) is a joke. A supposedly notorious drug lord, a dictator of a third-world country, and a wannabe Hollywood producer, yet so elusive for NIA to bring him down. A character named Belladonna (thinly veiled Madonna reference), a superficial celebrity that shags the drug lord first, later Powell, whose role serves for nothing more than to illustrate the shallowness of celebs we see every day.

The story ends with the one-shot Christmas special. Leaning more straightforward than the previous 4-issue series, this time Gorski and Powell severe ties with the US government. But are forced to renew their love-hate (mostly hate) partnership to battle an overly pious woman, aptly named Epiphany St.McMiracle, who is bent on destroying the whole globe (just because of her philandering husband, who gave her AIDS). It's a solid wrap-up, though I've found the religious humour a bit off-colour to me.

And there is the art. I have to say there is something sympathetic about Chaykin's art style. I like how he draws faces, but more often than not, due to troubled framing, intricate grid, and pages crowded with balloons, I had issues in working out what picture I should follow.
« Last Edit: 12 February, 2022, 08:05:11 PM by milstar »
Reyt, you lot. Shut up, belt up, 'n if ye can't see t' bloody exit, ye must be bloody blind.

pictsy

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7022 on: 20 February, 2022, 09:35:16 AM »
The Hobbit

This is so much easier to read than The Silmarillion.  This time reading The Hobbit I noticed that the style of writing somewhat changed through the course of the book.  At the start it came across a lot more as a parent telling a story to kids with a bit of humour thrown in to amuse themselves.  As the book goes on a lot of the conversational language disappeared along with the initial humour and came across more as a writer telling a story in a book.  I kind of like it.  It happens alongside Bilbo's growth as character and the escalation of the stakes.  I don't like how many situations are resolved through luck and/or happenstance.  Nevertheless, it didn't really make a difference to my enjoyment of the book.

Next up I'm going to try and read The Lord of the Rings again.  I may fail in getting through the entire thing.

sintec

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7023 on: 20 February, 2022, 12:27:57 PM »
Just finished Luther Arkwright and wow. One of those where it really does live up to the praise and accolades heaped upon it. Talbot is a genius with a deft eye for the grotesque. The narrative occassionally gets lost in a string of new age mystical mumbo-jumbo but it never looses it's momentum. Truly astounding stuff.

CalHab

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7024 on: 21 February, 2022, 10:23:36 AM »
Just finished Luther Arkwright and wow. One of those where it really does live up to the praise and accolades heaped upon it. Talbot is a genius with a deft eye for the grotesque. The narrative occassionally gets lost in a string of new age mystical mumbo-jumbo but it never looses it's momentum. Truly astounding stuff.

You've got the pleasure of re-reading it to look forward to. It gets better every time!

Colin YNWA

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7025 on: 21 February, 2022, 11:09:13 AM »
Just finished Luther Arkwright and wow. One of those where it really does live up to the praise and accolades heaped upon it. Talbot is a genius with a deft eye for the grotesque. The narrative occassionally gets lost in a string of new age mystical mumbo-jumbo but it never looses it's momentum. Truly astounding stuff.

You've got the pleasure of re-reading it to look forward to. It gets better every time!

So true AND there a new story coming out this year as I recall.

sintec

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7026 on: 21 February, 2022, 12:28:46 PM »
So true AND there a new story coming out this year as I recall.

Funnily enough it was the announcement of the new one that got this to the top of the toBuy list. Preorder for the new one will be getting placed come payday.

sintec

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7027 on: 27 February, 2022, 12:01:18 PM »
I made the mistake of following Indigo Prime's recommendation for The Golden Age. I say mistake because It's a very hard book to put down once you've picked it up. Which means I'm now running late getting orgranised before people get here for lunch and board games. Right enough procrastinating, to the washing up.

Hawkmumbler

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7028 on: 08 March, 2022, 03:32:02 PM »
Go Nagais DEVILMAN hits even harder on its second read than it did on the first. People like to joke about how daft the time travel arc was (rightly so, it is) but its a weird blip on one of the best comic runs ever made. Absolutely not for the faint hearted, hedonistic in ways western comics could never get away with at the time wrapped up in the best first/final chapter narrative diopter out there.

At time misery porn, at times bizarro pulp nonsense, indisputably Go Nagai.

Colin YNWA

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7029 on: 24 March, 2022, 08:31:53 PM »
Stern by Frederic and Julien Maffre. Just brilliant. Essentially a western but completely unburdened by western tropes (though I should point out I love western tropes)... or rather it hides them well. Stern is an undertaker in a small  two bit town. No one has spoken to him enough to ask him his first name.

Then there is murder, mystery and Stern, kinda turns into Quincy ... but... well just read it, though it is only available in Digital in English - at least from what I can see. The art is simply stunning, the character so glorious refreshing and yet somehow very comfortable in there western town. Its low key, as is the brilliant main character, but feels significent. Its just fun comics.

And that's just the first volume.

In the second Stern reluctantly travels to Kanas to buy books but runs into his past and things... well develop in unexpected ways from there.

One of the best things I've read in an age. Will be picking up the third volume as soon as I feel like putting any money Comixology's way... or maybe I'll find another way to get these.

pictsy

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7030 on: 25 March, 2022, 10:03:05 AM »
Fellowship of the Ring

I'm tackling Lord of the Rings pretty slowly.  It can be such a dirge of a read that I don't find myself able to voraciously devour it.  Also, when it comes to Fellowship at least, I much prefer the beginning.  Once the Hobbits get to Bree it gets much less interesting for me.  That's probably why I have got bored of the book so many times before getting to The Two Towers.

I was wondering what take away I'd get from the books this time round and it's not much.  I don't like the Sam and Frodo dynamic in the books.  The subservience of Sam is something I am not onboard with. His loyalty doesn't seem to be that of friendship to Frodo.  Frodo may view Sam as a friend, but Sam views Frodo as his Master.  He comes across as Frodo's loyal pet.  I know what this is and where this has come from and I don't find it an admirable character dynamic.

Anyway, I'll be moving on to The Two Towers.  I have a feeling I'll be liking one half of the book more than the other again.


Colin YNWA

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7031 on: 15 April, 2022, 09:43:49 AM »
Kingdom of the Wicked

Ian Edginton and D'israeli's nineties story of war in a childhood fantasy land in a struggle with a vestigil twin embedded in the brain... and its curiously quite grounded... well as grounded as a tale with that summary could be.

A fascinating story of imagination, growing up and struggling way that damaged the dreams and imagination of youth. Its quick, engaging, funny and chilling. A fantastic read with wonderful art. if you've not read this largely forgotten classic by two of 2000ad's best loved track it down its well worth it.


sintec

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7032 on: 16 April, 2022, 11:20:59 AM »
A weeks holiday gave me the chance to catch up on a bunch of the digital comics I've gathered from the various humble bundles over the last year or two.

Criminal can't remember who recommended the Ed Brubaker bundle to me but I'm glad they did. This is superb. Read the first 2 books and I'm hooked. These tales of the criminal underworld are perfectly paced and the art perfectly suits their grim and gritty feel. Reminded me a lot of Hope in the prog but without the supernatural elements.

The Fourth Power Juan Gimenez's art is stupendous unfortunately the story is a hot mess. The plot rattles along at a good pace but none of it makes much sense. The charaters are paper thin and the heroine has at least 3 unnecessry showers as an excuse for some naked female flesh. It's trash, stunningly beautiful trash but still trash.

Lady Snowblood also insists on getting it's heroine naked at every possible opportunity. Admittedly with slightly more plot justification as she tricks her opponents into thinking shes just a harmless, naked, woman. There's also a high count of lesbian seduction which is vaguely plot related but mostly an excuse for more nudity. Outside of that it's a great revenge yarn. There are some stunning pages, maybe not quite up to the level of Lone Wolf but thats a very high bar. The action is superbly rendered and easy to follow and there's some lovely quiet passages which capture the mood and atmosphere perfectly. It's obsession with the more salacious does get somewhat tedious though and there are a few episodes that add nothing to the overall plot beyond more nipples.

The Thirteenth Floor this was my first trip into the Treasury stuff. I wasn't sure what to expect but thorougly enjoyed this. It's very 80s kids tv/comic but it manages to keep ratchetting up the tension as the body count piles up. Ortiz's art is absolutely perfect for this series and he really sells the weird and wonderful worlds Max uses to torture his victims. It does get a little repetative but that's very much the nature of this kind of strip.

pictsy

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7033 on: 21 April, 2022, 07:34:23 PM »
The Two Towers

It's been a long time since I last read this book and it was the only book of the three I read before seeing the Peter Jackson films.  It reminded me a lot of why I was so disappointed with the second film and put off reading Return of the King.  It's much more consistent than The Fellowship of the Ring.  The twists and turns are enjoyable in both halves of the book.  I'm feeling more optimistic about Return of the King and finishing off this Tolkien binge.

I'm going to need a real palette cleanser before heading into my planned Moorcock binge.  I'm thinking maybe a few Pratchett books.

The Mask  I got access to all the main series, but I didn't finish it all.  The gimmick gets tiresome after a while.  It's not an outstanding narrative, nor was I expecting it to be.  I was expecting something pretty poor, in fact.  I found it was engaging up until Hunt for Green October.  It ended up being an interesting read.

CalHab

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Re: Whats everyone reading?
« Reply #7034 on: 22 April, 2022, 09:30:06 AM »
The Earthsea Quartet by Ursula Le Guin. I'm not sure why it took me so long to get round to this. Possibly because I'd bought the collected edition and the prospect of a 600+ page book is often not very appealing? Anyway, I should have read it years ago. It's easy to see the influences of the first book, A Wizard of Earthsea, on lots of subsequent fantasy. None seem to capture the same sense of a rich and strange world in the same way. The Tombs of Atuan, the second novel, takes a far more character driven approach and is all the better for it. The Farthest Shore is, on the face of it, a conventional quest story but manages to subvert it in interesting ways. Tehanu returns to the characters and shows them in a new light, in a changed world.

All great stuff. I think I'll reread this in a couple of years or so.