Sunday, March 2, 2008

Frugal Fridays!

Today's Frugal Friday is a little late. Sorry. It's also a little smaller than even last week. Money's been tight recently. Anyway, you don't want to hear about that. Let's get on with it.

"a lay of the land" has spent more than one post on Mark Millar. There's something about his balls-to-the-wall style that jives with me. I like the action, I enjoy the dialogue, and Millar is often paired with a great artist like Quitely, Hitch, McNiven or JRjr, AKA John Romita Jr. Millar and JRjr teamed on a great Wolverine story called "Enemy Of The State" which I own in hardcover. It's a terrific action movie with lots of great set-pieces and a plot that moves faster than Paris Hilton when somebody says "coke". Ha! Anyway, so the JRjr-Millar team is reunited on a comic called
Kick-Ass for Marvel's Icon imprint, and this Frugal Friday is going to review the very first issue.The story is simple. What if a high school kid with a comic book obsession put on a costume and became a super-hero, or rather, just a hero. Dave Lozewki is neither athletic, smart, or even special. He's just a kid who really likes comic books. The first issue takes us through the beginning of his "origin" - he's just so lonely that he decides to do something other than just exist. He's not doing it for money or for recognition or for anything other than boredom and loneliness. So he gets a costume and a mask and he prowls for some weeks. He tries to stop three kids from spraypainting and they kick his ass and shank him. Dave stumbles out into traffic and gets hit by a car, which keeps on truckin'. Laying there, broken and beaten, the issue ends, to be continued.

Let me just say that Romita draws the f*$% out of this issue. Look at the page in which Dave gets hit by the car:Oh, scrumptious. Wonderful. I love the art. It took me a long time as a kid to enjoy JRjr's art. It's very scratchy and sketchy, but his style is so unique and yet still so dynamic. He knows how to draw an action scene - see
World War Hulk for an example of that.

My problem with the comic is the story. I don't give a shit about Dave. He narrates correctly: he's not unique or special or interesting. Therein lies the problem. Why do I want to read about a kid who gets his ass kicked? It's a character study, not an action movie. We're supposed to get into his head and watch the sh*t hit the fan. But as a character, Dave isn't dynamic or rounded enough. He's just whatever, which makes for a dull read, in spite of the gorgeous art.

I will continue with
Kick-Ass because - well - come on! It's JRjr and Millar.

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