To observe that “war is hell” is so commonplace now, it has pretty much passed into the realm of tired cliché. It does not help that its sentiment is often cited equally by doves and hawks, the latter extolling the visceral virtue of combat. Violence is a difficult subject to represent, as even the most seemingly clear-cut anti-violence message can be twisted into something laudatory (as Stanley Kubrick was repulsed to discover with A Clockwork Orange). Indeed, there is a line of thought which states that all war films, regardless of intentions, are ultimately pro-war, as it is impossible to put combat on screen without glamorizing it. (This reviewer would extend such analysis to many supposedly “moralistic” gangster movies). For his new graphic novel Black Dog: The Dreams of Paul Nash, Dave McKean successfully avoids many of these pitfalls. He accomplishes this by almost entirely skipping the battlefield sequences, concentrating instead of the more intimate emotional toll of warfare for the fallen and survivor alike. The result is a moving mediation on the true cost of war.
As we’ve done in yearspast, I’ve decided to do a numerical analysis on our This Week’s Finest picks at Nothing But Comics for the sites third year. This writing will focus on the writers, artist and publishers who were selected for This Weeks Finest. That said, though it will be similar to the last two posts, there have been some changes to take note of. For the majority of the year, picking This Week’s Finest has been done by three different writers as opposed to years past where there where as many as seven of us picking books. Alex & Dean were still participating in This Week’s Finest at the beginning of the year so the numbers will be skewed a bit in terms of who chose what. Another change is our disclosure policy that we implemented shortly into the start of our third year. Nothing But Comics continues to grow and as such, more publishers are giving us comics for review. In the publisher section, I’ll address this further in the context of the section. Lastly, we all at Nothing But Comics have done a bad job in the past of crediting colorist and the work they did. We’ve made an effort to rectify that in the past year but initially, some of our This Week’s Finest posts still weren’t crediting colorist. As such, I won’t be covering it in this years post but plan on doing so for future postings. Now on to the data, where one publisher came back strong, a few creators made their This Weeks Finest debut’s on multiple occasions and one writer went from being honored zero times last time around to having tied for the most in year three. Continue reading This Weeks Finest Year Three→
Too often I see fans complain about movie’s having too many villains as though that automatically is a weakness. Most of the time it is, but the idea of using more than one bad guy in a story is far from a fatal flaw. Done well (and it can be done), it enhances the story. Writers and producers are going to have to learn to deal with it eventually, and now’s as good a time as any. Continue reading More Villains, More Problems→
By Warren Ellis, Roland Boschi, Dan Brown, Clayton Cowles, David Aja
As I sat in thought trying to decide on TWF, I went through the contenders in my head trying to narrow down what would be the deciding factor. There were a lot of strong books, even a few great ones. Soon I came upon “plot” and there were only two, but then I remembered “execution” and after that only Karnak #5 remained. That is because Karnak’s execution is flawless… Continue reading This Week’s Finest: Karnak #5→
Also features Don Cheadle, Clark Gregg, James Franco’s bad facial hair, Hopper from Stranger Things along with more actors and actresses that are probably far more accomplished and important then they guy that plays Hopper but not totally relevant to a comic book site.