Pointless Nonsense

Posted in comics by Bill on May 18, 2012

A mix of old and new comics, roughly best-to-worst:

Action Philosophers is something I’d heard of, but I had a totally wrong impression of what it was. I thought it was one of those things like Abe Lincoln Vampire Hunter (or World Heroes) featuring real characters in over-the-top genre action. Instead, it’s actual biographies of philosophers presented in a highly entertaining fashion. I’ve only just started, but I’ve already learned that Plato was basically a fascist and Sally Hemmings was Thomas Jefforson’s half-sister-in-law. But it’s so liberally peppered with jokes that it doesn’t get boring, even to people like me with virtually no interest in philosophy.
Dancer is an action/spy thing from Nate Edmondson, the same guy who wrote Who is Jake Ellis, which was also an action/spy thing and quite good. The end of Dancer brings on a twist that really has me interested in the series going forward.
Chimichanga is the story of a bearded little girl, a giant monster-y thing, and their adventures as circus freaks, from Eric Powell, the guy who does The Goon. It’s kid-oriented but has the same sense of humor. Which I enjoy.
Dan the Unharmable is an odd detective story from David Lapham, once the author of interesting nihilist crime stories like Stray Bullets, now purveyor of shock value stuff for Avatar. But I keep reading his shock value stuff. In this case, there’s actually a lot to like. Dan is sometimes a private detective, the rest of the time a borderline homeless slacker, not unlike the Dude from The Big Lebowski, except that Dan is indestructible. Which is a nifty concept.
Nightwing/Huntress is from the late 90s somewhere, but I’d heard it was one of the better Huntress stories. It was ok, I guess. It was written by Devin Grayson, a totally weird woman who fell in love with the Dick Grayson character so much that she changed her last name. She wrote a lot of Bat-family books in the 90s, but almost everything I read of hers was because it tied into a crossover, which I thought might not have been representative of her work, but I think it is. I wouldn’t call her writing bad, but nothing I’d ever seek out. Oh well. The art on this featured the bizarre pairing of highly respected multimedia artist Bill Sienkiewicz and guy who traces models from porn Greg Land. Sienkiewicz just did regular pencils for this, though, it seemed like he tended to handle the GCPD stuff while Land did the costumed superhero stuff. Which was an ok mix, and I didn’t catch any porn faces or escher girl anatomy, so I had no complaints. Considering the generally crappy quality of Huntress stories beyond Cry for Blood, this may actually have been one of the better Huntress stories, but it actually just kinda reads like fan fiction for someone who wanted to see Nightwing hook up with Huntress.
Hardcore was supposed to be part of Top Cow’s Pilot Season 2 years ago but just came out now. It was the year all the contenders were Robert Kirkman’s ideas, and… despite his successes, they were mostly pretty lousy ideas. This one was a pretty bad first comic, to be honest, but the end kinda left me wanting more. It started with a short action scene, then the whole middle chunk was really boring explanatory dialogue, then in the last 2 pages something interesting happened. I was actually ready to not even finish the book, but I decided to power through despite its boringness. And then, despite knowing there would be no issue #2, I ended wanting more. Which is maybe even more frustrating than if it’d been terrible start to finish.
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