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About jim

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  1. jim

    What You've Read Recently

    A Pound Of Steam, Spiral Bound by Dessa: Woman who writes good rhymes writes good poetry and keeps my attention during a short story. Fingers crossed Doomtree or Rain Taxi or whomever figure out a way to release this material as well as another tiny chapbook. I look forward to her memoirs. Tell Me How It Ends by Valeria Luiselli: A short non-fiction thing about the status of migrants/refugees in Central America and Mexico trying to get into the United States. 2666 prepared me for some of this material, but there are images that'll stick with me, like the hell train ride through Mexico into America in which people fall off and probably die. Jesus. Also, the statistic that of female refugees that make it into America, about 80% of them were raped on the way in. Half A King by Joe Abercrombie: Well, after an actual brutal read, a "brutal" read did the trick. I'm told this is one of his weakest books, but it fucking moves quick. A YA work about the weight of oaths, murder, lies, etc etc. I want the second one immediately.
  2. jim

    Every comic you've read in 2018

    The Infinity Gauntlet #1: So Thanos murders half the universe because he wants to impress Death? It felt massive in a way that event comics today don't, probably because Marvel wasn't scheduling events back to back to back at the time. X-O Manowar by Matt Kindt v1: Aside from a couple strange uses of Earth slang, this is a well produced sci-fi war comic. Three issues (clocking in at roughly 70 pages of comic, with 30 odd pages of bonus material) for $10. I'm cooler on it now than I was when it came out, but it's still a pretty package. Tomas Giorello comes out swinging. The Actual Comic Part Of The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen TPB From DC: Look, it's Alan Moore and Kevin O'Neill. It will reward multiple readings and is immediately evocative. No one here will doubt the amount of quality entertainment per dollar. I'm discomforted by the period (racist) depictions of Chinese characters, and maybe Mr. Hyde, too? I'm certain there's other things I missed. And that's the famous catch with League, however earnestly Moore and O'Neill plead their case of "depiction isn't endorsement," it doesn't sit right. I'll return to the prose pieces and errata soonish.
  3. jim

    Every comic you've read in 2018

    Elric The Dreaming City, and the first couple issues of Stormbringer: The splashes of the city are beautiful and delicate, the character stuff makes me feel the emotions of the characters. Titan's cleaned up reissue series of the PCR Elric stuff looks like garbage, presumably because there's a lot of trouble with those original pages. The Dreaming City is the only one that looks less bad, and while it's also the shortest, and probably the most expensive per page, it's fucking worth it. Stormbringer specifically: You know that "we're not worthy" .gif of Wayne's World? It's that.
  4. jim

    Every comic you've read in 2018

    Captain Swing And The Pirates Of Cindery Island: Even in Ellis' bibliography, I'd ask is this someone doing a dead on impersonation of him, but hey. Renato Guedes draws a lot of detail and throws in some cheesecake, because obviously what a steampunk story about the hopes of the future needs is ass and cleavage shots. /sarcasm font The Season Of The Snake #1: From Titan Comics' European imprint/tax writeoff comes a reissue. It's a massively detailed THING which is "about" a city, terrorism, kind of, and a use of color to indicate violence or heightened emotion. It feels similar to the Incal in spots, though that could just be because the artist straight up re drew the "falling into the city" page from the Incal. I enjoyed it and look forward to more. Escapo (colored reissue): This is the first time I came to Escapo and I enjoyed it. I built up the comic in my head and while my experience reading it didn't match up with my imagined conversation around this book, I still enjoyed it quite a bit. Grant Morrison's Doom Patrol v1: So this is where Newman Xeno comes from! But really it's a brick of surrealist comics and the main penciller Richard Case does a pretty fantastic job given what's thrown at him. He's the secret MVP here. Afar: Afrofuturism kind of? Leia Del Duca writes it and while I wish she drew at least part of it as well, the art's competent enough that whatever the female artist does next she's gonna knock it out of the park. Bloodshot USA: Reliably above average superhero work from Jeff Lemire and Doug Braithwaite. RIP Valiant. Secret Weapons v1: My second favorite of the epic level 6 style cape stories in the vein of Hawkeye. Oh, what might've been. RIP Valiant again. Jade Street Protection Services: Unremarkable "what if we made magical girls BADASS?" idea. Executed okay, though the change when the penciller inks themselves and someone else inks them is noticable. Early work, let's see where the authors go. Injection v2: The team riffs on Chew and William GIbson's Blue Ant trilogy. Right State: Another one of Vertigo's "fuck, we should try to get into the thriller book market" OGNs that's a bit too on the nose, but still sadly prophetic seven odd years later. Bitch Planet v2: Look, it's still great. Steady as she goes.
  5. jim

    Every comic you've read in 2018

    Dead Rabbit #0: What Hannah wrote. Nothing new here, but executed well by lifers and I want to read more. Dept. H v3: I'd have to check the previous two trades, but I'm not feeling one of the big axes on which the story turns. That said, it's still the Kindt family so everything else about this comic makes up for it. (A note so sweet it hurts: Their daughter colored a fill-in page of Dept. H characters named and drawn after her friends. She' credited in the front of the book.) Sebastian O: Oscar Wilde as Luther Arkwright, I guess. Inessential in the Morrison bibliography. Ms. Marvel v8: I'm still here. Every time I think I'm gonna bounce because of Ms. Willow Wilson's politics, and yet each time she keeps my attention. She's grown into the stature of a great superhero writer. As long as she keeps doing Ms. Marvel, I'm gonna buy it. Death: At Death's Door: An old Sandman spinoff manga done by Jill Thompson. I'm drawn in by seeing her work in a different style. It's a quick read, but I also imagine it slides neatly into Sandman continuity. The Highest House #1: The new miniseries from Mike Carey and Peter Gross. This time around, it's commissioned by a French comics publisher (and I imagined IDW licensed it), so Mr. Gross' pages look fantastic and the issue is printed at a magazine comics size. It feels a little more YA, but whatever, Mike Carey still knows how to write cruel, evil nobility, and Mr. Carey's in rare form here. It's $5, but I feel I got my money's worth.
  6. jim

    Every comic you've read in 2018

    Land Of The Lustrous 5 / A Bride's Story 9: Still wonderful. The superlatives remain the same. Ichikawa uses tricks to keep the pace on LotL, but they're smart tricks and they work. Jessica Jones 18: Bendis and Gaydos bow out from the character they created as gracefully as possible. As long as I don't read too many Bendis comics, the writer's tendency to use twelve words when he could use three won't grate on me so much. That Redacted Comic Hannah Mentions: Given the writer's bibliography there is literally zero fucking reason for him to put text describing the clearly visible action on the page. I think I'd be kinder to the comic if the dialogue was any good, but it clearly isn't.
  7. jim

    Every comic you've read in 2018

    A bunch of Batman Zero Year: This is too fun to be mad at. Bitch Planet v2: I'm beyond bummed they stopped the main story. Beast: Marian Churchland's comic about an artist stepping into another artist's shoes. It shows hints of the amazing work she'd do later on. Witchblade, Deadly Class, Rumble, Descender: These comics are as good as they usually are. Steady as she goes.
  8. jim

    Every comic you've read in 2018

    Des: I also read There's Nothing There, and while I'm obliged by friendship to like Kindlon's work, I'm genuinely surprised as to how you thought that was a dud ending. - - - - - The Terrifics #1: Seems like Jeff Lemire gets to write the Fantastic Four and someone told him to bring in Tom Strong. Tom Strong was written by other people when Alan Moore oversaw him, so I don't imagine anyone's tremendously angry. Promethea introduced by Steve Orlando, of course, is a whole other ball game, and that was handled terribly. All-New Doop: Peter Milligan and a rushed David LaFuente have a whole bunch of meta fun. I got a little bit eyerolly at the end because of the twist, but Milligan's allowed to be Milligan and LaFuente keeps everything clear. Rapture: Fun, inessential, reminds the Valiant universe Shadowman exists. CAFU and Robert De La Torre also do great work. Batman: Creature Of The Night: A prestige format comic done by men who Know What They're Fucking Doing. Kurt Busiek and John Paul Leon appear to be I Kill Giants-ing the Batman origin, but set in 60's Boston. Batman 44 (aka the issue Snyder decides he has something to say about the cycle of violence and to help him write young black men he drafts Brian Azzarello?): How quickly we forget about the Question. This issue feels incoherent.
  9. jim

    Every comic you've read in 2018

    Abbott #1: Saladin Ahmed writes a 70's black reporter. See, the rub is she's poor. And black. In Detroit. And we know she's a good soul because figuratively everyone she meets in the first issue tells her how honest and brave she is. Once I understood it was a nod to cheap detective shows I eased up a little, but ugh, as Rucka said about Chandler: Put the hammer down, [Saladin]. The art team is the star here. Gideon Falls #1: Get the Green Arrow team back together on a horror comic heavily influenced by Twin Peaks, I guess? Twisted Romance 1-3: I skipped the prose pieces and just read the comics. I liked the CSM story, though I'm not sold on Ms. McNeil's style using what looks like charcoal. It's a romance comic series, it's what's on the tin. Scales & Scoundrels #1-3: Look, it's another off brand D&D comic.
  10. jim

    Every comic you've read in 2018

    Batman The War Of Jokes And Riddles: I'm obligated to have beef with this comic because the writer's CIA, but fuck I liked this. His work with Kite-Man is good and the twists work. Django Unchained: Get the letterers a raise. Get Reggie Hudlin, the guy who adapted Tarantino's script, a raise. They did the Lord's work on this one. Art's great and the artists tradeoff isn't jarring, which means that the colorists did well. Tarantino's tarantinoisms are expaserating to read on the page. Void Trip #1: They put Cheech and Chong in Saga. Dollar store plain yogurt. Infidel #1: This screams 2000's era Vertigo so much, which makes sense because the writer's an ex-Vertigo editor. It's a horror story set in a Muslim family living in New York City. The script could use work and some parts are a little clunky, but I think this is dude's first experience writing a comic. Prism Stalker #1: Leave Sloane Leong alone and they're gonna do trippy scifi shit. No idea what the story is, but it's pretty as fuck. I re-read Rai 13 and man, that team executed Astro Boy Rai well.
  11. jim

    Every comic you've read in 2018

    Unknown Soldier v4: This is probably my second favorite comic I read last year. The ending was only an 8 in a series that hit 9 or 10. Anyway. Fucking fantastic series, and now I'm kicking myself for not agreeing with the people saying I was Unknown Soldier when I actually cosplayed Newman Xeno. Ms. Marvel v6 and v7: Binged a couple collections tonight and I feel strongly that this should be the low bar for superhero comics. Compared to what surrounds it, it's a massive artistic success, given it's a distinct voice from a largely stable team that in style and tone differentiates itself from the rest of the line. GWW and I disagree on some contentious shit, but these collections feel like the work of discrete human persons, buttressed by the Marvel trademarks. I thought the get out and vote story was snide, but you'd expect that from me. In a better world, this would be the minimum for creating superhero comics. In this world? Fuck, nominate her for an Eisner.
  12. jim

    Comic Book of the Month?

    Count me in.
  13. jim

    Every comic you've read in 2018

    Hellboy In Hell Library Edition: I adore this thing. It's magisterial, sad, slow and perfect. There's three or four pages in a row of architecture in an issue and never once does the comic feel decompressed. At this point, the team are masters of mixing as few elements for maximum effect. Probably the best Hellboy story I've ever read. I'm bummed they're bringing the character back because this was a perfect ending. The inkwash pages kill. Dave Stewart knows how to color Mignola flawlessly. It's difficult to say too many good things about the book. It's gothic and weird and slow. It's a mystery/ghost story from masters of the form. Land Of The Lustrous v4: Continues the pitch perfect marriage of Stephen Universe, samurai manga and My Lesbian Experience With Loneliness, while also keeping a plot together. My favorite comic of 2017. I'll be bummed when there's not new volumes dropping every two or three months, since it'll require me to wait an entire year to see what happens next.
  14. jim

    2017 Holiday Swag Thread

    I received (I'm certain I forgot something): Books: Walk The Red Road-Misha, Hellboy In Hell Library Edition, and Vertigo-era The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen collection. Money: Money. Gift cards: Two at Amazon. Games: Wolfenstein II. Clothes: A Columbia skullcap, a pink shirt from J. Crew, a sweater. Food: Nice chocolates, a handmade candy cane. Time: With Hannah, with family.
  15. jim

    Every comic you've read in 2017

    Sherlock Frankenstein And The Legion Of Evil 1 and 2-Man, Cthu-Lou and Cthu-Louise are adorable.