Saturday, March 13, 2010

Wednesday Is Any Day For All I Care #58

Anywhere 101
Devil #1 (2010)
Image United #0
Orc Stain #1

Anywhere 101 (Arcana, 2009, $1.00)
"Besides, this comic sucks..." -writer Tom Akel, who dedicated the book to his deceased father a paragraph earlier, possibly based on his repressed memories of a blue diamond that may kill him if he looks into it.

This comic was priced at one dollar. With my discount, I probably paid eighty cents or less. The few retailers who stocked up on a cheap book with "PUSSY" in big letters on the cover will end up lining their quarter boxes with it. It isn't worth a plug nickel. The book is stupid, unfunny and pointless. The art by Alan Quah looks like tattoo flash. The coloring is all muddy autumn tones. I can't even summon up enough interest to bash it further, and my apathy has had the book sitting around my apartment months after I read it without a review. Had I read a fourth book today, it still would be. Someone involved with this book had a lot of money to waste (from an inheritance?) on an unfortunate vanity project.

Devil #1 (Dark Horse, 2010, $3.50)
Last week I ripped into the fucking terrible Pilot Season: Demonic #1, which looks like The Dark Knight Returns compared to this crap. Editor Tim Ervin must have gotten liquored up with creator Torajiro Kishi or his representatives and woken up with his prick up the prolapsed rectum of the disemboweled corpse of a Thai ladyboy with camera flashes popping in his face to have overseen this garbage. Ervin must have been like one of those guys in a suspense thriller who's squirming to get out of an impossible situation, arranging to cover the completely inadequate art in Roger Corman style darkness, seeing to it the book prints nearly black pages you can barely make anything out of. The side effect is that all of the captions are oversized blobs of glaring white with smallish bunches of text floating like squarely centered islands in a marshmallow sea. It doesn't really matter, because all the dialogue is retarded cliche bullshit nobody should bother allowing to pass over their conscious minds for the slim minutes it takes to page through this "book." I take that back. The developmentally challenged should not be underestimated in their ability to convey greater depth, emotion, and progression in their literary endeavors than this.

The story is so simple, it could have been produced by a Commodore 64 computer program. Dirty Harry as a Blade Runner against vampires. If that sounds cool to you, remember that so did a war between vampires and werewolves, and that turned into the god forsaken Underworld series. In execution, this is closer to John Carpenter's Vampires as directed by Joel Schumacher on a budget. There are even ultra-glitter vampires-- like, Tron neon glowy vampires. It's just that wrong.

Devil is a perfect example of the absolute worst tendencies of manga, and I mean the really awful filler material that doesn't usually get reprinted outside of Japan. If you enjoy hentai, you won't even realize that you missed a rape sequence because it is so ineptly rendered. If you loathe hentai, the part where the rape victim swells and explodes from the infected sperm will make you want to vomit directly onto the comic, but again, the graphic representation is so poorly handled  that you'll have to use your finger. 

Mike Diana could write and draw a better comic than this. Frankly, I'm writing this review, and you're reading it, so the odds are in our favor of being able to combine forces and produce a better comic than this based simply on literacy. There's a couple of industry truisms: that the most talented creators are usually the least agreeable people, and that folks wanting to break into comics should compare their work to the field's best, not its worst. I recommend hopefuls track down Torajiro Kishi, who'll likely be such a gentile son of a bitch, he'll tell you everything you need to know in order to work in the business without your catastrophic lack of ability hindering you. I mean, Devil isn't fit to wipe your ass with. The glossy stock has no traction, so you'll just smear the shit across your ass cheeks. It serves no purpose beyond the destruction of trees and the misapplication of staples. Kishi must be doing something really right behind the scenes, or else the devil in the stupid title is meant to recall some Faustian bargain the fucker made.

Image United #0 (Image, 2010, $2.99)
I found Image United #1 to be an at best mediocre book with a good back-up. The exact same thing hold true here, but further in both directions. The lead story is inoffensive, and I think it's a reprint, but I don't care enough to check on it. Where the first issue was lame but had the novelty of allowing a bunch of Image partners to jam on one book, here we only get one character that remotely maters and art by Erik Larsen, Whilce Portacio and Ryan Ottley. It gives a little more background on Access, who doesn't reference his days in DC/Marvel intercompany crossovers, and now wears even more dated clothes. Well actually, the guy's name is Fortress until Marvel sues up a name change (theirs is in Avengers Academy,) and he's at heart The Greatest American Hero with less charm and an unforgivable absence of Connie Sellecca. It's 16 pages involving a Savage Dragon team-up and a weak villain created by writer Robert Kirkman. All three receive profile pages so slavishly recreating entries from The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe, you'd think Marvel could also sue for the infringement on their intellectual property. Well, except the actual entries are rather sloppily written and skimpy on detail (Dragon's doesn't progress past a summation of his first issue.) Blessedly, Chris Giarrusso offers the four page parody Image Untied that's both genuinely funny and makes me think I need to pick up a G-Man trade. Finally, there's a four page preview Turf that should sway buyers to check out the full issue.

Orc Stain #1 (Image, 2010, $2.99)
This Vaughn Bode riff spends thirty-two pages going nowhere you need to visit. There's some alien world lore in the beginning, but it isn't to be taken seriously, and gives way to a thief's quest. The art is quite good for this sort of thing, but how can a book with full frontal orc nudity (both genders) and sparse dialogue still manage to be such a long dull read? Well, it's being about xeno-potheads probably plays into that.


mathematicscore said...

G-man Cape Crisis was probably better than the last five years worth of major evens at both of the big two. Plus, he created arcade games for G-man over at his website. Whatta guy.

Diabolu Frank said...

Okay, that seals the deal then!


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