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  1. #1
    Fictionaut-in-training warriorfist's Avatar
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    Default Thoughts about DMZ

    Hey folks,

    I had some time to burn these past two days (not really, but revision's been a breeze so far and I have poor impulse control). I went through Brian Wood's DMZ in its entirety during that time, and just wanted to get some thoughts off my chest about the series. I think the biggest strength about Brian Wood isn't how good he is at writing, but how consistent his stuff usually turns out to be. I saw this first in Northlanders, but it's a lot more apparent in DMZ. A hyper-realistic series about the Second American Civil War, especially since it's so depressing, might seem like a chore to read in a first glance, but it's actually pretty great how the series just grabs the reader's attention and doesn't let go until the end. I loved his world-building here, and how all the characters got their spotlight sooner or later down the line. No one is right and no one is completely wrong in this book. Except maybe Trustwell, I guess.

    I also like how balanced the series is, in hindsight- no one element overshadowed all the others throughout the run. This series also sports a pretty somber take at the 'road to hell is paved with good intentions' dilemma. Matty Roth is humanised pretty well throughout the series, and you as a reader feel gutted when he ends up doing what he did with his hit squad. In fact, there is no happy ending for anyone or anything in this book, but you feel pretty satisfied by the time you are reading the epilogue issue. Speaking of which, the ending is also something to note, in the sense that it brings about a sense of closure that's complete in a level that's rarely seen, at least IMO. You truly feel that it's the end of an era by the time the end has come.

    So everyone, how did those of you who read this book feel about it? What did you take away from it in the end? Also, any favorite moments? Feel free to discuss anything!

  2. #2
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    I loved the series. I got it monthly that I just couldn't wait for the new issues. My personal favorite is issue #32...that because that is the first time I got a letter published!

    :)
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  3. #3
    Fictionaut-in-training warriorfist's Avatar
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    Hey nightwing,

    That's wonderful to hear! I really haven't made a go at writing letters yet, seeing as most of the titles I really end up liking end up being finished by the time I get down to reading them. (Though, if I might have a go at sending one to Marvel for some current stuff like Daredevil, JiM, etc.)

    What were the individual moments that stuck out to you most from the series? I think one of the most unbelievable ones were the Nuke detonation and the subsequent fallout and Kelly Connolly's viking funeral, off the top of my head.

  4. #4
    Member Enormouse's Avatar
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    I, sadly, haven't finished it. I have but two volumes left, but I have loved every single story thus far.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by warriorfist View Post
    Hey nightwing,

    That's wonderful to hear! I really haven't made a go at writing letters yet, seeing as most of the titles I really end up liking end up being finished by the time I get down to reading them. (Though, if I might have a go at sending one to Marvel for some current stuff like Daredevil, JiM, etc.)

    What were the individual moments that stuck out to you most from the series? I think one of the most unbelievable ones were the Nuke detonation and the subsequent fallout and Kelly Connolly's viking funeral, off the top of my head.
    For me, it was the whole election arc. It was just great to see Matty just lost himself.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by warriorfist View Post
    Hey folks,

    I had some time to burn these past two days (not really, but revision's been a breeze so far and I have poor impulse control). I went through Brian Wood's DMZ in its entirety during that time, and just wanted to get some thoughts off my chest about the series. I think the biggest strength about Brian Wood isn't how good he is at writing, but how consistent his stuff usually turns out to be. I saw this first in Northlanders, but it's a lot more apparent in DMZ. A hyper-realistic series about the Second American Civil War, especially since it's so depressing, might seem like a chore to read in a first glance, but it's actually pretty great how the series just grabs the reader's attention and doesn't let go until the end. I loved his world-building here, and how all the characters got their spotlight sooner or later down the line. No one is right and no one is completely wrong in this book. Except maybe Trustwell, I guess.

    I also like how balanced the series is, in hindsight- no one element overshadowed all the others throughout the run. This series also sports a pretty somber take at the 'road to hell is paved with good intentions' dilemma. Matty Roth is humanised pretty well throughout the series, and you as a reader feel gutted when he ends up doing what he did with his hit squad. In fact, there is no happy ending for anyone or anything in this book, but you feel pretty satisfied by the time you are reading the epilogue issue. Speaking of which, the ending is also something to note, in the sense that it brings about a sense of closure that's complete in a level that's rarely seen, at least IMO. You truly feel that it's the end of an era by the time the end has come.

    So everyone, how did those of you who read this book feel about it? What did you take away from it in the end? Also, any favorite moments? Feel free to discuss anything!
    how cohesive did it read in "one sitting" so to speak? i read it in pieces as it released over years and definitely enjoyed it, but in the final volumes when things were wrapping up i found them referencing stuff i could no longer remember from earlier in the series (since it takes place across most of a decade). so i am debating trying to plow through it again in a condensed period of time before loaning it out to others.

    since you mentioned northlanders, i actually liked that more. if anyone here enjoyed dmz but has not checked out northlanders, give it a try. its shorter as well.

  7. #7
    Fictionaut-in-training warriorfist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dishpan View Post
    how cohesive did it read in "one sitting" so to speak? i read it in pieces as it released over years and definitely enjoyed it, but in the final volumes when things were wrapping up i found them referencing stuff i could no longer remember from earlier in the series (since it takes place across most of a decade). so i am debating trying to plow through it again in a condensed period of time before loaning it out to others.

    since you mentioned northlanders, i actually liked that more. if anyone here enjoyed dmz but has not checked out northlanders, give it a try. its shorter as well.
    The flow was pretty good, but I think the story could be fairly divided into Before and After sections with the whole Parco Delgado debacle. The book became entirely engrossed in it afterwards, and things just kept on escalating from there. If I were to go for a TV comparison, it would be like the first couple of seasons were fairly self-contained, and then these last two or three seasons follow this massive myth arc.

    Quote Originally Posted by nightwing1982 View Post
    For me, it was the whole election arc. It was just great to see Matty just lost himself.
    That was one of my favourites too. Matty really just wanted to believe there was this simple solution to the whole mess, and he just kept ignoring all the negatives about Parco. I don't know how close it was to the '09 US elections when this was published, (or maybe it came out afterwards), but I found the entire thing to be eerily evocative of Obama's campaign. Except of course that Obama wasn't a bona fide gangster, haha.

  8. #8
    Marquis de carabas's Avatar
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    By the way, does anybody have any problems with ho terrible the quality of the trades is? I'l getting scared to even open them now. Last one I got, I cracked the spine and the book just seperated from the cover.
    'The marquis. Well, you know, to be honest, he seems a little bit dodgy to me.'
    'Mm,' she agreed. 'He's a little bit dodgy in the same way that rats are a little bit covered in fur."

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by carabas View Post
    By the way, does anybody have any problems with ho terrible the quality of the trades is? I'l getting scared to even open them now. Last one I got, I cracked the spine and the book just seperated from the cover.
    Not really...that's because I have the whole series in floppies

    ;)
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