View Full Version : CBR: When Words Collide - Dec 20, 2010
12-20-2010, 03:28 PM
Tim gives his rankings for the Best Comics of 2010 and talks about why Deadpool and Wolverine stories made the list along with work by the likes of Chris Ware, Dan Clowes, Grant Morrison, Brecht Evens and others.
Full article here (http://comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=29965).
12-20-2010, 04:32 PM
Daytripper is my number one as well. It hit me on an emotional level, which is something the other books did not accomplish. Lint was great too, maybe my number two of the year, but it and Daytripper are polar opposites in my eyes. One is cold, distant and perhaps overly methodical, the other is touching, organic and human.
12-20-2010, 05:10 PM
Sweet to see Bulletproof Coffin on it. The Spirit also!
Great list not dominated by the typical mainstream books.
I'm still dying to read Afrodisiac.
12-20-2010, 05:23 PM
I read... like three and a half of these. I'm bad at comics.
12-20-2010, 05:51 PM
I read... like three and a half of these. I'm bad at comics.
I've only read six, but at least that means I'm about twice as good at comics as you.
12-20-2010, 06:15 PM
Perfectly described Daytripper. It is THE comic book of life. Probably my numero uno for 2010, as well.
Have to give you major kudos for including series such as Irredeemable and The Spirit. Both so under appreciated.
No Unwritten, though! And no Return of the Dapper Men! Two surprising omissions.
12-20-2010, 07:39 PM
Interesting column as always.
I can't help but wish you would have waited till the very end of the year to do the list, though, because this week S.H.I.E.L.D. comes out for the first time in two and a half months. Did you forget about it? I almost did. But I love that series.
And, I hate to do this, but I'm going to be the lone voice of dissent on that Grandpa Wolverine story. It was good, don't get me wrong, but I don't think it's as perfect as everyone says. First of all, the story is radically out of character and inexplicable. Which is fine, but it limits how much it can really "say" about the character. I've heard people say this is the best Wolverine story ever. But...Wolverine wouldn't even act that way. Wolverine resents being used for violence...so why the f*** would be become an ultimate fighter? Fighting for money, for cheap degrading entertainment--that's what Wolverine has always been against. And what's the deal with Wolverine wanting his girlfriend to hurt him? That's sick on a level that Wolverine's never been. The story was one big WTF. I realize it was supposed to be shocking--and that's fine. It was an interesting little story. But I don't think most readers realized how the shock value totally went against the character in ways that beg SOME explanation and justification. "Wolverine's sick of a life of violence...so now he wants more violence, uh, to get off on violence, even though he's always been conflicted about violence" isn't a much of an explanation. A Wolverine that gave into violence that way would not be "with-it" enough to hold down a job. Wolverine's always dealt with his capacity for violence in the past by taming his inner beast or whatever. That's what the character's been about since day one. So this story is actually a giant regression, and it's boring once you realize that. (In fact, the first time we see Wolverine in the X-Men movies, he's a cage fighter. This projected future story of Grandpa's really is that much of a regression.) It's the equivalent of "What if Bruce Wayne just became a businessman full-time and never channeled his issues (...and had sexual issues that we readers could giggle about)?" or "What if Peter Parker went back to being an amateur wrestler and forgot about any sort of higher calling (...and had sexual issues that we readers could giggle about)?"
I get the impression that this Grandpa Wolverine story was just another case of a creator saying "If I drench this story in weirdo sex and VIOLENCE then people will think it's PROFOUND and not notice that it doesn't have any logic to it." Not that I need everything to make sense. I didn't need Grandpa to explain to me why Logan would have changed to become this animal. But I don't get the impression that readers who loved the story even noticed what a radical perversion of the character this story was. And it's FINE to twist characters, but I think a story (if it's going to be great) has to acknowledge and make USE of that perversion...not just throw it out there for some kind of shock value that's interpreted as profound just because there's a lot of blood and lust in it. This story has a lot of elements in it that made comics like Bloodwulf and Deathblow so reviled. But I guess if an indie artist, who's a little more literary, works nonsensical gore into a superhero story, THEN it becomes acceptable and profound?
I'm being too harsh and too long-winded. I did like the Grandpa story. But I saw problems with it that I didn't hear anyone else even recognize. And I thought it was kinda superficial because of hot it relied on predictable blood, guts and demeaning sex to seem brilliant.
In the final (finally!) analysis, I don't think Grandpa did anything wrong. Because all he was writing was a one-off 8-page Wolverine story. So he didn't need to think anything out really. He could just go wild and crazy and not worry about how much he was providing a version of the character that was inexplicable, untraceable and cheaply shocking. But as a critic, don't read that story and tell me it was an amazing classic. It's too inexplicable and problematic to be anything more than a neat little 8-page WTF.
12-20-2010, 07:39 PM
I totally need to read daytripper when it comes out in trade. I have just discovered casanova with the icon color reprints and the art just blows my mind. Also need to check out thor the mighty avenger and strange tales 2.
12-20-2010, 08:08 PM
EDIT: Err, I meant that SHIELD will be out next week, not this week. Too busy formulating my lengthy blowhard dissent on Grandpa to realize which week it was. :wink:
12-20-2010, 08:48 PM
Too busy formulating my lengthy blowhard dissent on Grandpa to realize which week it was. :wink:
Rafael Grampa may be a grandpa, but I doubt it. He appears to be pushing 30.
12-21-2010, 12:39 AM
I'm a Wolverine fan too but I need to disagrre with you. I think people are right, Grampa made an instant classic and, YES, maybe the best Wolverine story ever. His vision for the character made me believe again in the character. In very deep layers. I think what Grampa was trying to do some questions and proposed the best answers for it.
What could happen with a guy with the power to heal himself from every kind of hurt in minutes, maybe seconds? His body will produces "TONS" of endorphine and dopamine ( ok, I'm not sure what the name of the natural substance that morphine replaces in the blood) and it causes high dependece. Imagine TONS of it on his blood for years. And, after years and year of being bombed by these substances he turns an addicted. It's obvius now, isn't it? He's wild side has the best explanation now, It's jus abstnence. He NEEDS to be hurt all the time, his body needs something to heal all the time because of it. When he don't get some hurt, he turns a savage guy and he'll try to find somebody to fight against. It could explain why he accepted to be part of a team of annoying teens, right? Just to get some trouble. Grampa proposes a future of degradation, an old Logan with no reason to fight against of his addiction. And, like a weird junk, he is using the love of a girl just to satisfy the addiction, in ALL layers. But he pays it getting some hurts that he can't heal, hurts in his soul. It's too much obvious, but it's simple. Love is simple and it is a love story, my friend. Now I can believe in Wolverine. He turns the hero in human, not in a monster. It's a sad story about a guy that cannot control his addiction. The story is very profound, man. Grampa is a GENIUS. And what about the ring of mutant healers all addicted in pain? Fighting not for money, but just to fell alive? Brilliant. And it's just a 8 page story. And the story is so brilliant that puts a whole anthology on the list. It's not a "best short story list". Think about that.
I'm sure if you re read the story now you'll understand it. Grampa is an individual voice in comic industry and I'm really happy to have read a Wolverine story that made me think about human conflicts so deep.
12-21-2010, 12:16 PM
Batman? In a top 20? The whole past 4 years has been a drug addled mess. It may have worked as an original character but Batman has been MIA since Morrison took over.
12-21-2010, 12:57 PM
Where's the love for "The Unwritten?" Easily one of the best series out there. It should get a nod for the choose your own adventure issue alone.
12-22-2010, 07:14 AM
I liked the opening arc of "Unwritten," but I grew bored with it by issue #6 or 7. I checked it out again this summer when I accidentally bought an issue (my LCS guy had it in my pile, and I didn't notice it until I got home), and I really disliked it. Honestly, and I've said this on the Splash Page podcast more than once, I cannot understand the appeal of Mike Carey's writing on anything. I find his pacing to be inconsistent, and his character work to be flat.
I wonder why you guys keep saying "Unwritten" is so good. Make a case for it. Convince me.
Now, Morrison's Batman, on the other hand, is inventive and engaging and full of intricate structural devices and thrilling moments. I assume Jeff is trolling here, because there's no way anyone reading the comics could actually say Batman has been MIA for the past four years. Just because it hasn't been the narrow-minded post-Miller Batman throughout Morrison's run doesn't mean the character isn't there. Batman has a long an varied history, and the grim, troubled, tank of justice has been a relatively small part.
(I've been reading early issues of "Detective Comics," and Batman is a solo, grim character for a year at most. Then it's Robin and wacky villains and the Penguin zooming around on wheels. Thirty years of that before the O'Neil/Adams version, which had insanity of its own. Then another 15 years between that and Frank Miller.
No, the real Batman is in Morrison's run, in all of his beautiful paradoxes.
12-23-2010, 12:11 PM
I'm looking forward to reading "American Vampire" again if DC/Vertigo will start issuing TPBs. Sampled the first couple of issues and really enjoyed it. Sorry, but I'm just not interested in hardcovers.
12-23-2010, 10:36 PM
I just caught up with American Vampire in the last few days. I absolutely loved everything Scott Synder wrote, not so much with the Stephen King stuff. It was rather like a chore reading his back-up. Issues 6-9 certainly benefited from King's absence. Now the series is pure awesome.
On the subject of The Unwritten, I can understand not feeling that book, I know I don't at times but the core concept is just so interesting to me, so I stick with it. I just hope Mike Carey kicks it into high gear soon or I end up dropping it.
12-24-2010, 03:59 AM
I bought Strange Tales II #1 on Tim's brilliant suggestion and have already lent it out after reading it about 5 times. I did pick up #2.
Grant Morrison is proof that God Exists and that S/He Loves Us All. I'm gonna go back and fill in the Return of Bruce Wayne a bit. I admit it being the only part of the Great Grant Batman Machine to not fully appreciate. I only picked up #1 & #6! I admit missing a piece in the Dr. Hurt Puzzle.
SUPERGOD by Warren Ellis just finished up and its beguiling finish needs further inspection. I liked Warren's ASTONISHING X-MEN XENOGENESIS...I'm lovin'.
I'm about to give him major crap so here's some bon mots, although began WAY back in earlier '09, Geoff Johns & Gary Frank's SUPERMAN SECRET ORIGIN #4-6 all released in 2010 and this was one good funnybook. Lifelong DC fan, fan of TV's SMALLVILLE for years now. Which Superman Origin fits you best? This one seems to be the best of all worlds from Smallville to the Legion to Jimmy, Lois & Perry...Johns nails it here.
Hey...just in time to make my Best of 2010 List??? Dan Slott & Humberto Ramos' "Big Time" on AMAZING SPIDER-MAN! I'm three issues deep & hooked. It is Peter Perker's life & mouth and Humberto's 'mazing pencils that keep me coming back. Cheeky, modern & pop! I jumped off the boat at "Sins Past" and completely avoided ONE MORE/BRAND NEW DAY and its interesting continuity precedents but iDigress...
POWERS, Vol. 3. Hooboyeee...perhaps my favorite superhero comic book as a grown-up.
BUFFY SEASON 8. Hey, George Jeanty's intermittently awesome pencils aside, the end of Season 8 is pretty interesting and had me waiting on every next new issue. Buffy Season 8 was the comic in 2010 that got Rev. Sully to his FunnyBook Bodega to spend $30 every 6 weeks or so. It really is for the vested fan and impossible for a new reader to jump on at say #38 (of 40). For the record the Oberon Sexton reveal over in BATMAN & ROBIN was a lot cooler than the Twilight reveal here at BTVS S8.
I'm also wondering what comics have you dropped?
To my surprise I have dropped DC's THE FLASH, GREEN LANTERN, BRIGHTEST DAY and Marvel's ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN. I don't get to the FunnyBook Bodega every week as I used to. I'm kinda like the Grandpa in the original Lost Boys movie...when you read the TV Guide, why get a TV? Well I read CBR...
I am surprised that I dropped ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN. USM did not get bad and I love Bendis' writing in moderation (I steer clear from Earth-616 terra firma titles usually until ASM #648).
And for the record, I really feel as though Geoff Johns' has been "phoning them in" since he took the Big Chair recently. I'm not too much into being judgmental nonetheless the proof of the pudding is in the taste and I'm simply not picking these titles up. They're wickid "meh" lately.
What's the point of lugging around crappy comics? I mean...I got 52 issues of DC's COUNTDOWN with extensive Tie-Ins to ponder over an eventual fate...perhaps drop them on the Taliban in Afghanistan. Bad Superhero Continuity Comics gives me a case of the "Who Cares?" S'why I really like the STRANGE TALES comics now...great use of properties without the burden of continuity.
Boston, MA USA
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