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Battle Action Special 2022

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Proudhuff:

--- Quote from: Bad City Blue on 17 June, 2022, 12:11:08 PM ---https://comicscene.org/2022/06/16/garth-ennis-battle-action-comprehensive-review/?fbclid=IwAR3Yulfe6nhCgHfwk5zDZvP9x2AEiBPVEavBoEx4uSzrJVrSKLAKCOVgNZE

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Spot on review imho

Richard:
Read it today and thought it was great. Kids Rule OK was very well done. I would love to see a multi-episode Nina Petrova & the Angels of Death story (by Ennis) in the prog.

Colin YNWA:
Absolutely superb.

The great thing about Ennis is while he writes everything here and there is a solid through tone in his 'serious' war stories there is a sharp and refreshing variety in the material he writes, that makes the whole thing feel very much like an anthology.

Johnny Red opens things quite brilliantly with one of my favourite things in the special and there are many, many great things here. Keith Burns is predictably wonderful on art and the story is a tight, well crafted tale that uses its 12 pages to perfection. Cramping so much in, but not at the expense of an utterly satisfying action thriller.

The Sarge with simply wonderful art by our PJ Holden takes a different tact and uses the characters in the strip to pay tribute to the troops on the ground who fought. It doesn't hold back in its honestly, particularly in one chilling moment, but this one packs an real emotional punch and is possibly the best thing in the special.

So we then get a needed tone change as Crazy Keller brings a high octane action romp, playing much more for laughs. Chris Burnham's art is perfect for the switch.

Dredger changes tact again with a punchy tribute to the hard 70s cops. It feels more cheeky and disposible than anything else in the special, but earns its place because of that very fact. John Higgins does what John Higgins does so well.

Hellman of Hammer Force pulls the tone back to that of the first 2 stories with an incredibly effective tale that services the need for thrilling action early so the second half can get to the heart of the piece. We get a real sense of why Hellman does what he does. Its such a brilliant story and challenges The Sarge, Mike Dorey's art being spot on as well.

Then we get another tonal switcheroo with Kids Rule Ok. This would have felt completely at home in Kev O'Neill's anthology with Alan Moore, Cinema Purgatorio. Its a cutting examination of the events that led to Battle Action. Witty and unflinching. Brilliantly constructed and shows how comics, when crafted by greats can do things no other medium can.

The special is bookended perfectly by Patrick Goddard - a man born to draw in Battle and Nina Petrova and the Angels of Death a dark, gripping story with real heart, which perfectly sums up the comic. Its classic Ennis war fare, capturing the hard brutality with real humanity. Just superb.

So yeah add in some great intros to each story and this is quite the product. I've very deliberately over used the word 'Special' in this review. We get lets of titles called special, given its historical usage. I can rarely thing of a time when its been more fitting than for this one. From the hardcover format, to each and ever story inside this is indeed something special and if you've not bought it simply do so as there's a wonderful world were this does so well we return to it on a regular basis.

One of the best things I've read all year.

Funt Solo:
What a great comic! Wow. People up-thread have covered it, really: great stories that are written to make it feel like an anthology-worth of writers. Fantastic art.

Entirely nit-picking here, but the only thing that flagged up as odd was perhaps a font problem between computers, as the logo for Nina Petrova and the Angels of Death seems to have gone a bit wrong (comparing the preview page and the first page of the strip proper, where the subtitle is a parsing nachtmare of upper and lowercase). Perhaps this could be fixed if there's a later print-run or reprint or what have you.

Jim_Campbell:

--- Quote from: Funt Solo on 03 July, 2022, 05:11:38 PM ---Entirely nit-picking here, but the only thing that flagged up as odd was perhaps a font problem between computers, as the logo for Nina Petrova and the Angels of Death seems to have gone a bit wrong

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Yeah… some fonts refuse to be embedded in PDFs and need to be converted to outlines to display correctly, There are various effects on the main part of the logo that would require the text to be outlined anyway, but the sub-header, being plain text, was probably (unintentionally) left as a 'live' font* — the upper/lower you're seeing is what's necessary to utilise variant characters in the intended font ('Soviet Bold', I believe).

I've been caught out by this little wrinkle more than once… :-(

*It'll likely have been outlined in the first example you show because rotating text like this can sometimes produce unexpected results if you don't outline it.

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