Into the longbox

Wormwood from Garth Ennis and Jacen Burrows. This is really Preacher lite. It’s an interesting enough story with the usual Ennis flourishes – the road to hell paved with mimes indeed – but running only 6 issues, only a bit of the depth. It’s blasphemous, profane and often in bad taste, but also full of tart observations and occasional moments that move you in spite of all the puerile humor. Jacen Burrows art is the only thing here that’s superior to Preacher, but it’s a good story nonetheless. Try it, and if it appeals to you at all, go start in on the Preacher trades.

The Immortal Iron Fist: The Last Iron Fist Story, Ed Brubaker, Matt Fraction, and David Aja. It’s no secret how much I enjoy Brubaker’s writing, and I have a long-standing fondness for Iron Fist, so I decided to check out this collection of the new series. It’s all the fun of a late night Kung Fu movie, with a winning protagonist. More good-natured than intense, Danny Rand faces the trial of being a Billionaire Kung-Fu hero. The Iron Fist franchise has a history of mixing Blacksploitation with its chop socky, and Luke Cage drops to keep a bit of that going on. On the art side, Aja handles the tonal shifts with aplomb. His storytelling is sharp, and he does a great job of making the Iron Fist mask especially expressive. It’s fast paced, winning stuff.

All-Star Superman #9 – Morrison and Quietly. Whew, no more bizarros. Morrison continues his brilliant translation of Silver Age Superman stories into the 21st century, keeping the wonder of those stories. You can’t make a Silver Age story believable, but Morrison makes the tropes come alive. It’s a world of wonder and strangeness, but the people walking through it are humans. Strongly recommended.

2 Responses to “Into the longbox”

  1. meg Says:

    Is Wormwood the one that features a latter-day Satan and Jesus in civvies? I’ve been meaning to read that… Someone recently asked me if I would be on a panel discussing messianism in comix, and Wormwood seems like an obvious choice, esp. if I also do The Chosen.

  2. faber Says:

    It’s actually the Anti-Christ and Jesus in civvies, but that’s the one. Ennis is not my go-to guy for deep cosmology, nor for subtle religious insight. Preacher’s stronger, but even there it’s his human characters who move me.

    I hadn’t heard of The Chosen until you mentioned it. I haven’t read enough Mark Millar to hazard a guess as to quality. I think Rick Veitch’s The One also features a/the Messiah. Veitch is… interesting. He’s done a couple series of nothing but comic art transcriptions of his dreams. He got thrown off DC’s Swamp Thing (after taking over the writing chores from Alan Moore) for trying to write a meeting with Jesus into what was basically a mainstream comic. He’s one of those guys who does solid, even inspired work, but has never really hit a huge critical or commercial success.

    If you’d really like to bend some heads in the panel, have a look at Animal Man #5’s The Coyote Gospel. It’s in the first trade reprint, though finding a single issue may be tricky. I can loan you the trade if you have trouble locating it. The immortal Moriarty (Jeff Meyer) described it thus:

    “ANIMAL MAN #5 – Weird, but genius-weird. Enough symbolism to keep a
    theology major happy for days. Breaks conventions I hadn’t even
    noticed before now.” — Moriarty, aka Jeff Meyer

    He’s spot on. Grant Morrison *is* my go-to guy for weirdness.