Monday, April 1, 2013

Graphic Novels Read in March 2013

Oddly enough, all of the graphic novels I read last month were reprints or retrospectives of some sort. Some have already been reviewed at length. I’ll provide links to those and a few brief comments about the others.

The Incal - Classic Collection (1981-88/2012) - Alexandro Jodorowsky, Moebius

Previous comments here.


Action! Mystery! Thrills! Comic Book Covers of the Golden Age 1933-1945 
(2011) - Greg Sadowski, ed. 

Previous comments here


DC Showcase: Hawkman Vol. 1 (1961-66/2007) - Gardner Fox, Joe Kubert, Murphy Anderson, et al. 

That's right: here


Marvel Masterworks: Captain Marvel Vol. 1 (1967-69/2013) - Roy Thomas, Gene Colan, Arnold Drake, Don Heck 

You guessed it: here


Batman: Gotham by Gaslight (1989/2013) - Brian Augustyn, Mike Mignola, P. Craig Russell, Eduardo Barreto 

Gotham by Gaslight is one of the graphic novels I bought way back in the day when it first appeared, although I think I only read it once and forgot about it. Augustyn, Mignola, Russell and Barreto do a great job of recreating the Batman mythos in another time, the Victorian Era, before it was fashionable (and these days, practically obligatory) to do so. Although Mignola’s stunning art seems to have a monopoly on the gaslight Batman in the first tale, Barreto’s more genteel style works just as well in the second tale, “Master of the Future.” Very enjoyable.  


The Bill Everett Archives, Vol. 1: Amazing Mysteries (1938-42/2012) - Bill Everett, Blake Bell, ed. 

I’m probably not the best judge of Golden Age comics. I just haven’t read that many of them and don’t really know how to get past the way stories were told in the late 30s and early 40s. Everett was clearly an important artist during this period and beyond, and the progression in his work is evident in this first volume, from Skyrocket Steele to Dirk the Demon to Amazing-Man and beyond. It’s the stories that are - at least by today’s expectations - hard to digest, suffering from implausible plots (even by comic book standards), ridiculous situations and improbable endings. 

Yet I found myself charmed by heroes such as Hydro-Man and Sub-Zero Man, despite my misgivings about the stories. If you’re interested in comics history and the development of an artist, pick up this first volume of The Bill Everett Archives. If you’re unsure, checking this one out from your library (or finding it on-the-cheap as I did) might be your best bet. 


Feel free to tell me what you read last month. 

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