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TheMidnighter

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xx Random Reviews
« Thread started on: Apr 10th, 2006, 06:03am »

Nevada (DC/Vertigo)

W: Steve Gerber
A: Phil Winslade

"There is but one fundamental force in the universe. Its fundamental modalities are Time, Space, and Spirit. Nothing exists outside the first two. Nothing lives outside the third."

Nevada is a very cool story about a Las Vegas stripper, her ostrich Bolero and how Nevada gets recruited to be a Rift Warrior, someone protecting the existence of Existence. It all sounds a bit farfetched, but that does not mean it cannot be a good story, now can it?

Nevada lives in Las Vegas with her ostrich Bolero and she works as a showgirl at The Nile, a casino and hotel. In the hotel, people are being murdered in the most weird ways; the computer system's codes change from one's and zero's to hieroglyphs because of received data from outer space and; Nevada seems to go mad, as her world appears to travel through time.
The story begins fairly common with only a small amount of aliens and sciencefiction, but the story developes into an exploration of the universe, of what people's motivational drives are, why consciousness is so often compromised and what is good and evil, how these are defined, why they differ in meaning from one person to another and, thus, can be ambiguous.

I bought this because it was cheap, but I like the story a lot better than I would have thought I would. The themes are used in a very interesting way and I liked the story even better when I read it for the second time. Probably because it's all a bit difficult to digest the first time around.
8-/10
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xx Re: Random Reviews
« Reply #1 on: Apr 10th, 2006, 06:03am »

The System, by Peter Kuper

This book has been published by DC/Vertigo. It's very, very cool and not only because of the way it is brought to you: wordless. The story cannot be summarized because there is no main story within this story -- every aspect of the story is essential yet trivial at the same time.

The book is much like drifting in an ocean: you are moving in the manner that you are because of the water directly surrounding you. But eventhough you are only in direct contact with the water around you, its movement is determined by every single water molecule in that ocean. And not only that, the ocean itself is also influenced by rain, by vaporizing sunrays, by gravitational forces from the moon, by boats, by creatures living in it, by wind, by your own movements and much more.
The story of The System is the story of multiple people, whose lives interweave with each other and affect each other's life. The story depicts the system of urban life and its flow; eventhough it takes place in New York City, it shows masterfully the lives we live and how it can all be seen from a larger perspective as a big system.

You will not look the same way at (city)life itself again.

8-/10
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xx Re: Random Reviews
« Reply #2 on: Jun 30th, 2007, 10:08pm »

Just wanted to post these somewhere. This thread got lucky.

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xx Re: Random Reviews
« Reply #3 on: Jun 30th, 2007, 10:09pm »

And another one:

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xx Re: Random Reviews
« Reply #4 on: Nov 15th, 2007, 10:28am »

I read the first two Walking Dead trades this morning. They're very quick reads and very enjoyable. I've always been a zombie fan, but this takes it further, dealing more with the characters and situations rather than the undead themselves.
It's not often that I read an entire trade in one sitting, but I knocked both of these out in no time.
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xx Re: Random Reviews
« Reply #5 on: Nov 16th, 2007, 7:03pm »

I read the first Invincible trade last night and loved it. Bought the hardcover today. That Kirkman guy's pretty good...
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xx Re: Random Reviews
« Reply #6 on: Mar 9th, 2008, 6:31pm »

Whiteout & Whiteout: Melt
W: Greg Rucka, A: Steve Lieber

These two comics are published by Oni Press and show more of the early works of Rucka and Lieber (both of whom later worked on Gotham Central). The setting is Antarctica, and on one of the settlements they have a US Marshal there: Carrie Stetko. Carrie is a freckled, not really tall, none-too-shy woman, charged with the task to preserve peace and order on a place no one really would like to stay, anyway, nor are we even build to survive there. It's a hellish place, but then with a different kind of extreme temperature.

In the first trade, someone has committed a murder. This changes the setting completely for Carrie. Not only because there has not been a murder before, but also because the settlement is closing down for the absolutely terrible time where the weather gets too difficult to handle. This means she also has a time-limit in which to solve the case.
The second trade is less of a mystery, but not less of a difficult task for Carrie. The explosion of a Russian science station is a mystery on its own, but when she finds out that the explosion was caused by people, she has to find out why. The answer to that question is not only a threat to her territory, but the entire world.

There are lots of reasons to want these trades. Both trades are cheap (14 dollars) so that's a good thing. But that's not the main reason, of course. The main reason for these trades are the absolute quality of the material. The story setting on its own is cool (pun intended): a Marshal on Antarctica. And then a murder. I was intrigued by the setting alone.
The amount of realism is another factor that makes me like both books. Lieber draws very beautiful landscapes, using beautiful black and white. His people, surroundings, weather conditions - all are drawn very realistic. Rucka's people also have their own voice, as always. But what struck me most about the writing, was that Rucka seemed to know the Antarctic very well. He really gets the hardships across of having to live in the freezing cold all the time, of losing your sense of vision in a snowstorm, of how unforgiving 'she' (Antarctica) can be to those unfortunate enough to wander around on the Ice, and just how freezing cold it really is in that place.

If you want to try something else, you might think of these titles.
I give both books 8/10.
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xx Re: Random Reviews
« Reply #7 on: Aug 1st, 2009, 05:14am »

Transient Man

This is a cool web comic. It is a bit long to go through but it is a great, great read. Very interesting. 9/10.
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xx Re: Random Reviews
« Reply #8 on: Sep 30th, 2011, 09:43am »

Asterios Polyp

This is a story that could have only been this beautiful in comic form.

I recently moved to another country. I live in Europe so countries are not that far apart. I now live in the Comic Capital of Europe. I lived there for a bit over a month until I decided to actually look in the shops. In one shop, I found Asterios Polyp. This comic (or 'graphic novel') had won many, many prizes. I had read a lot of praise for it so I wanted it for a while. Whilst I could not order it from my favourite webshop, here it was, on the shelf, bought by no one.

I literally freaked out a little bit. My excitement exploded in that store, I grabbed the book and told my girlfriend I had been looking for this book quite some time, even though she had no idea why I was happy about it.

Asterios Polyp is made by David Mazzuchelli, whom most of us know as the artist on Batman: Year One and on Daredevil (both acclaimed stories with writer Frank Miller). Mazzuchelli had enough of the superhero comics. I am glad he left. Asterios Polyp is one of the best graphic novels I have ever read.

I cannot tell you what it's about. I have only read this story once and it bounces between the present, past and hypotheses. The story is set in real life, it feels real and is all the more spectacular for it.

Mazzuchelli did something amazing. He crafted a visual storytelling that adds so much to the story. It's not just pictures depicting a written story. The pictures themselves enhance the story, are part of the story and, frankly, the story could not have been told so perfectly without the pictures.

The art looks very different from the work you might know from Mazzuchelli. Despite this, if you are looking for a work of art in the sequential art medium, this is it. The book has won several prizes: LA Times Book Prize Graphic Novel award, won Eisner award for Best New Graphic Novel, Best Writer/Artist and Best Lettering and the book received one additional nomination and it also won three 2010 Harvey Awards (Best Letterer, Best Single Issue or Story, Best Graphic Album of Original Work).

I have to say that no words that I write can really convey the beauty of this book. This is what comics should be: words and art that form a cohesion, make the whole better than the sum of its parts. A good alternative to the superheroes who seem to take up at least 90% of our reading time.

It's published by Pantheon. The hardcover costs thirty dollars and it's money well spent.
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