Monday, September 10, 2007


So yeah - last week was one of those weeks when it was an uphill battle just to remember to post song lyrics and hippo pictures. I've got a new routine going on, and hopefully more substantive posting will resume as I settle into a groove.

In the meantime: Shooter on Legion? OK, they've got my money, sight unseen. I have no shame.

Aragones returning to Bat Lash, with John Severin? I'll be God-damned, it's like they're actually interested in making good comics again. What a fucking concept. Again, I'll be paying real money for this one . . . all six issues before it gets canceled for depressingly low sales.

Aragones on The Spirit? I admit my antipathy towards the Spirit revival is quite strong . . . even after I found out Eisner had indeed given the project his blessing, it still seemed massively wrong. I mean, Orson Welles would probably have signed off on a sequel to Citizen Kane if you paid him enough money towards the end of his life as well, doesn't make it any better or smarter an idea. (Not that The Spirit carries quite as much currency in comic terms as Kane does in film, but still, you get the analogy.) Add in Darwyn Cooke, a creator I cannot bring myself to feel anything above a risible disdain for, and the project was not one I could warm too under any circumstance. But Aragones? Well . . . depending on the artist, I may just change my tune. Not because I have or will have changed my mind about the essential viability of continuing the character's adventures on anything more than an extremely sparing basis, but because . . . well, because he's Sergio Aragones, one of our greatest living cartoonists.

Since when has 52 become so lionized? I remember when the damn thing was being published you couldn't hear above the din of people complaining, but now that its over it is being hailed as some sort of milestone of modern graphic literature. It's funny how just a little bit of a perspective change can make even the most gimlet-eyed cynic see the past through rose-tinted spectacles. Compared to Countdown, Bloodstrike would seem like David Mamet, so is it any wonder that 52 holds such a special place in the collective memory?

Been scanning Dan Slott's new Avengers: Initiative book, and it seems odd that no one has mentioned the fact that this book seems to be fulfilling almost exactly the same kind of role in the Marvel cosmology / publishing scheme that 52 fulfilled for DC. Only to me it reads a far sight better, because Slott seems to have a better hand for judging dozens of secondary and tertiary characters than the brain trust behind 52, who seemed half the time to be avoiding stepping on each others' toes as much as anything else. I love Slott's attitude towards Marvel's byzantine - but still essentially straightforward - continuity, far more than any of DC's rather pained and bureaucratic attempts at a peevishly unappealing consistency. You'll miss it when it's gone, is what I'm saying, just like you miss 52.

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