Thursday, June 14, 2007

Justin's Geek Explosion

If you don't read comic books, you're missing out on some of contemporary fiction's best stories and writers. Don't let the wrongful stigma 'Comics are just for kids.' stop you. Today's comic books are geared for and aimed squarely at adult readers. Here's a list to get you started...

Watchmen by Alan Moore/Dave Gibbons - By far my favorite work of fiction, comic or otherwise. Alan Moore destroyed the notion of comics being "just for kids", and told an amazing story of political, social and personal upheaval to rival anything that had come before or since. Where else could you find yourself rooting for a sociopathic xenophobe
but in this story?

Fables: Legends In Exile by Bill Willingham/
Lan Medina, Steve Leialoha and Craig Hamilton - Everyone knows fairy tales are deeper than Mother Goose, but Fables takes that idea and runs with it. After being driven from the Homelands by a shadowy adversary, the heroes and villains of every bedtime story ever told are forced to make a go of it among the mundane people of our world. How they create a society and the strife present when larger-than-life personalities clash is the stuff of great fantasy.

Batman: The Killing Joke by Alan Moore/Brian Bolland - My choice for the best Batman story of all time. Between the spot-on characterization of Batman, Commissioner Gordon and The Joker, and the insanity linking them all together, this story has so much to offer. Also, it contains perhaps the best moment between archenemies ever written.

Starman: Sins Of The Father by James Robinson/Tony Harris and Wade Von Grawbadger - A look at legacies and the father/son bond set amidst a coming-of-age story involving super-science, murderous villains and inherited vendettas. That's what's so great about comics - they can be either as straightforward or allegorical as any other medium, make points regarding the deepest human ideas and conditions, and show a twenty-something antique dealer learning to pilot an energy-blasting flight rod.

Preacher: Gone To Texas by Garth Ennis/ Steve Dillon and Glenn Fabry - Garth Ennis is insane and brilliant. He's written a story about a lapsed reverend searching for God while accompanied by his assassin ex-girlfriend and an Irish vampire. Also, the preacher sees John Wayne. Did I mention his family are an ultra violent clan of hillbillies? And how about the sheriff's son who shoots himself in the face and doesn't die? And what about the single-eyed inbred childhood friend? I won't even mention the Vatican's murderous agents, or the living embodiment of Death - The Saint of Killers. Yeah, insane and brilliant sums it up.


Mike said...

Starman was awesome, it really struck me as an interesting take on the history of comics itself.

Justin Riley said...

Yeah, further on in the series, the stuff with the history of the city is amazing. Then again, I'm a sucker for Golden/Silver Age DC stuff.

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