Thursday, June 2, 2016

Exploring Comics by Genre: Spy

Welcome to the second part of our primer in comic book genres. Espionage, is certainly different than it's presented in popular culture. That's fine, I'll stick more to the ultra-cool versions we see in film and books, though the books tend to be grittier. Again, this is not a definitive view of the genre, or even all of the best material, simply a collection of works I consider good. This will be a shorter post, not due to material that's good, but due to my personal library not having more.

Fire-Brian Michael Bendis wrote interesting things before being a Marvel all-star. This is the story of a college student recruited into Intelligence service. It's his first major work, and blast, it's a good story to make you paranoid about government.

Sleeper- Brubaker and Philips could write comics to make fish thirsty. This book has a great story, and a good twist ending.

Casanova- This is likely the best spot for this trippy series. There's some strange science, great characters, and mind bending twists. Think something along the lines of Dick meets Fleming with perhaps a dash of Dali.

Velvet- Brubaker and Breitweiser put together this story of a field agent who retired to the secretarial pool for personal reasons. She's been framed years later, and now has to pull out all her tricks.

Cowboy Ninja Viking- Do you really need more than the title? Fine. Take folks with Multiple Personality Disorder, and turn each of those personalities into a weapon. Don't try with more than three personalities.

Red- Perhaps you've seen the two movies that are very loosely based on this graphic novel by Warren Ellis. There's only one deactivated agent they're after, and he's very good, and just wanted to be left alone.

 Global Frequency- There are unexploded bombs of a ridiculous variety throughout the world in this Warren Ellis series. Miranda Zero and her 1001 specialists handle them, from appart Soviet sleeper agents to suicide cults taking over office buildings to delusional doctors playing God.

Now, to some titles currently in issues(no trades yet).

Jack Pot from Aftershock comics- Only two issues in, the team is very good, and they have an interesting SF idea about probability and locations going on.

James Bond 007- I was a little wary at first, but Warren Ellis is writing. This feels like James Bond. By that I mean a little closer to the books and current reality than the movies. Has the violence, swagger, investigative skill, and instincts to get the job accomplished.

Action Man- Some or you are like, "What?". A new Action Man comic was launched at Free Comic Book Day this year, and it was a great ride. Check it out.

Next, comics go to WAR.
Part One: Crime

When you play Social Justice, the world loses.

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