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The Watchtower - A thread for all comics


biglime
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As with everything, it's simple economics.

Young Liars sold next to nothing and Gears of War was the highest selling comic of 2008. Not widely reported by the comics trade as they don't tend to sell in the direct market. But they sell a lot, lot more than the equivalent 'big' event from Marvel or DC (think Secret Invasion or Final Crisis).

It's weird, the properties themselves aren't that bad and the talent is great but as with most licensed product, the end result is a just a bit shit.

Apparently in the US the only place to get comics these days is in specialty stores. The exception being licensed stuff which is often sold at games shops too.

So you have this thing where the comics industry is just eating itself alive:

- selling the same old product to the same people...

- ...via the same sales channels (ie specialist comics shops)

- ...trying to maximise those sales by using crossover events (which only some subset of the existing fans are going to give a rats ass about)

So its no surprise that the licensed stuff absolutely hammers the shit out of the regular stuff. It has wider distribution, piggy backs off more mainstream media, and features characters/environments that more people seem to give a fuck about (seriously - does anyone know who the fuck half the characters are in Marvel & DCs B and C-list teams? Also does anyone care?).

Even the comic book films dont help comics out. Iron man, Batman et al might do great stuff at the box office, but it doesnt drive people into comics shops to buy regular, monthly titles. At best it might get people to pick up a graphic novel or trade paperback from a book shop.

Todd McFarlane was way ahead of the curve with his toy line branching out ASAP into sports and movie licenses. The man recognised the ghetto industry that is comics and was quick to branch out.

As for the talent working on those titles - I imagine they like getting a nice pay day, even if they don't like the work. I'm sure Bendis is loving the money he gets working on Marvel stuff, even if he would rather be writing Powers or other stuff.

My only hope is that digital distribution of comics via ebooks and tablets is going to help rectify a lot of the issues in the market today. I know of at least a few comics creators who are just waiting for that to happen.

Having said all of the above, I will say I bought some comics this week. They were almost all Batman titles, bar for one Grant Morrison Vertigo title. I'd take more chances with the stuff I read if it was cheaper. Honest.

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Does anyone else love Electra Assassin?

Most of my other favourite comics are loved by everyone (Watchmen, Miracleman, V, DKR, Sandman) but EA never seems to get mentioned. Even Miller retrospectives seem to barely mention it. Yet for me it is just utterly fantastic. The writing is sublime, far superior to anything Miller has written in the last 15 years and the Art is simply some of the best comics has ever seen.

If you haven't read it then I can't recommend it highly enough. I think it is in the absolute top echelon of comic art.

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I've gone berserk lately with buying TPB's. My interest in comics has been burning brighter than ever now having been surpressed for years. Found a taste definately for non marvel stuff. Stuff like xmen, spiderman and the like leaves me cold although I quite like the Ultimate marvel runs and Ironman. Love the Batman I've got so far, some superman, The authority, planetary, Y the last man, Fear Agent, The walking Dead, Preacher and a load of one shots and alternative stories.

Picked up Ultimate Invincible Vol 1, Red Son and Ultimate Fantastic 4 Vol 1 this weekend

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I really have to stop buying TPB's in the scattershot way I am at the moment. I need to get up to date* with

Y: The Last Man

The Goon

Cable/Deadpool

Strontium Dog

that's off the top of my head, then there's the manga like

One Piece

Initial D

Kurasagi Corpse Delivery Service

Gunsmith Cats: Burst

Thank fuck I gave up on Naruto.

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Does anyone else love Electra Assassin?

Most of my other favourite comics are loved by everyone (Watchmen, Miracleman, V, DKR, Sandman) but EA never seems to get mentioned. Even Miller retrospectives seem to barely mention it. Yet for me it is just utterly fantastic. The writing is sublime, far superior to anything Miller has written in the last 15 years and the Art is simply some of the best comics has ever seen.

If you haven't read it then I can't recommend it highly enough. I think it is in the absolute top echelon of comic art.

I've never liked Elektra as a character really. However, I'll happily admit that Miller's artwork on it is (for me) the best he's ever done, and the colouring by Lynn Varley is quite beautiful.

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I've never liked Elektra as a character really. However, I'll happily admit that Miller's artwork on it is (for me) the best he's ever done, and the colouring by Lynn Varley is quite beautiful.

She's good in Ultimate Daredevil... :lol:

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I've never liked Elektra as a character really. However, I'll happily admit that Miller's artwork on it is (for me) the best he's ever done, and the colouring by Lynn Varley is quite beautiful.

Bill Sienkiewicz drew Elektra: Assassin. Pretty sure it's fully painted by him too.

You may be thinking of Elektra Lives Again, that was Miller/Varley.

Been something like 15 years since i read Elektra:Assassin and I vaguely remember it being pretty incomprehensible. Must dig out the issues and give it another go. I've always loved Sienkiewicz though and the arwork is staggeringly beautiful.

Stray Toasters is another one of his that I need to reread at some point.

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I've just finished reading a complete run of the New Mutants, Sienkiewicz's art was a joy when he was drawing it. Sadly I'm now upto the Liefield issues, good god its bad.

Anyone else read Joe the Barbarian yet? Grants new tale for Vertigo. Its very understated, which was a surprise.

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When you say Grant do you mean Morrison?

Yes I do. If I was on about the other one I would have said Alan's tale. Then you could have said, "when you say Alan, do you mean Grant"? Then I could have said "no Davis". Oh the fun we could have had, ruined now :lol:

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Does anyone else love Electra Assassin?

Most of my other favourite comics are loved by everyone (Watchmen, Miracleman, V, DKR, Sandman) but EA never seems to get mentioned. Even Miller retrospectives seem to barely mention it. Yet for me it is just utterly fantastic. The writing is sublime, far superior to anything Miller has written in the last 15 years and the Art is simply some of the best comics has ever seen.

If you haven't read it then I can't recommend it highly enough. I think it is in the absolute top echelon of comic art.

Yes its awesome.

Not as awesome as you think it is, but its definitely great.

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I've just been going through my RSS feed for the Invincible Superblog and have decided to pick up the recoloured Rocketeer hardcover as well as the full-colour Usagi Yojimbo story which completely passed me by.

What's the thread's verdict on Fables? Worth reading, or overrated pap? I keep seeing it in Orbital Comics when I go for a random browse (and then leave it in horror at the prices) but Fables looks lovely and I've heard good things about it.

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Looks like Amazon have copies of the reprinted, evasive Vol 27 of Lone Wolf and Cub. I'll finally be able to finish the epic!

;)

Turns out it was a German Manga.

If anyone knows of an english copy of this online (or in your local shop - I will pay postage) please let me know.

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I've read all the volumes of Fables apart from Volume 12, which I've bought but haven't got round to reading yet. I've even picked up the Peter and Max novel by Bill Willingham again not read it yet, but I heard it might be a decent introduction for newcomers to decide whether they wany to invest more time in the comics. It's safe to say I'm a fan of the series. I think it's definitely worth giving a shot to see if you like it. Maybe try the first few volumes to see if it's your thing. Part of the fun for me is seeing their twists on established characters from fairytales and the like, trying to spot them for myself and so on.

What I like about the collections is that there are some where you have one story arc filling up the entire collection usually at about 6-8 issues and then you'll have another with some done in one stories or some 2 issue ones. All the while adding to this large overarching thread which slowly gathers momentum as the series continues. They don't seem to be afraid to change things up either and leave them changed. No retcons/resets/what-have-yous as far as I'm aware.

As for the writing, well, I'm not sure I'd really be able to critically evaluate. Too much bias and perhaps just a lack of ability to do so. I find that sort of stuff hard to explain and elaborate on. The majority of the complaints I've seen seem to be regarding the art at the beginning, but it does improve gradually. The writing doesn't seem to turn off too many.

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I've just been going through my RSS feed for the Invincible Superblog and have decided to pick up the recoloured Rocketeer hardcover

Been trying to find the Deluxe version and it seems to be rarer than rocking horse shit. It's either been delayed or the first rpint run was a bout 8 copies. Its only been out since November and nobody has it in stock or has had since Christmas. I have a really old reprint of the first 2 issues and it really is a thing of beauty.

Dave Stevens was a master

http://ryalltime.blogspot.com/2009/12/rocket-science.html

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Rowan Morrison met him when he was a student or something (Rowan Morrison was a student, Alan Moore wasn't a student, stop being silly) and said he invited him around his house for a cup of tea and a slice of cake and a six hour chat about Watchmen. And then when it was time to leave, Alan Moore went up the attic and came down with priceless Watchmen memorabilia. I think that story is told earlier on in this huge thread, I may have left some parts out. Say for instance a part where Alan Moore savagely beats a street urchin outside his house whilst wearing a top hat to demonstrate a point. I'd probably remember that part though, so I don't think it did happen after all.

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Yeah I remember Rowan's story.

He didn't invite me back to his house, probably because we were a few hundred or so miles away on the Suffolk coast. I'm sure he would have done otherwise. He was one of a group of artists/writers/musicians taking part in a sort of multimedia thing looking into the history and mythology of the area - psychogeography they call it. I went out for a fag during the interval, saw him outside the stage door and just walked up and introduced myself. I'm fairly used to doing this to well known people, having been a journalist for some time - some recent examples include David Cameron and Elton John. I've never been nervous in the slightest about meeting anyone, but with Moore I was shitting myself, despite having sank 4 or 5 pints. Turns out I had no need to be at all and he was lovely, we chatted for ages about the myths and history of East Anglia (well he chatted, I listened, awestruck), then got onto League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, I told him about my favourite stories from his comics over the years, he moaned about DC comics - it was amazing.

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Yeah I remember Rowan's story.

He didn't invite me back to his house, probably because we were a few hundred or so miles away on the Suffolk coast. I'm sure he would have done otherwise. He was one of a group of artists/writers/musicians taking part in a sort of multimedia thing looking into the history and mythology of the area - psychogeography they call it. I went out for a fag during the interval, saw him outside the stage door and just walked up and introduced myself. I'm fairly used to doing this to well known people, having been a journalist for some time - some recent examples include David Cameron and Elton John. I've never been nervous in the slightest about meeting anyone, but with Moore I was shitting myself, despite having sank 4 or 5 pints. Turns out I had no need to be at all and he was lovely, we chatted for ages about the myths and history of East Anglia (well he chatted, I listened, awestruck), then got onto League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, I told him about my favourite stories from his comics over the years, he moaned about DC comics - it was amazing.

Very jealous. I love Mr Moore.

A friend of mine has worked in the comics industry for a long, long time and one day he decided to make an impromptu call to Alan Moore's house. Rather than turning him away, he invited him in, gave him lunch and they buggered off down to the local pub. By all accounts he had a fab time, and I think the nature of Moore is that whilst he looks very scary on occasion, he's a lovely chap :lol:

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