Wednesday Comments – Trying Something New

There are a handful of comic books that will perennially remain on my pull list. Green Lantern and The Flash will always be there. Nightwing and Batman are equally safe bets. Of course I’ll also pick up anything by Brubaker and Phillips or Brian Azzarello.

But sometimes it pays off to venture outside of your comfort zone. In the past year or so, I’ve jumped outside of my comfort zone and, for the most part, I’ve been rewarded for trying something new.

And since last week I covered some recent debuts, I figured this week I’d look at some other books that I’ve tried out, relatively recently.

Awhile back I picked up the first issue of Thief of Thieves mainly because I was intrigued about how it would be executed. I knew that Robert Kirkman had been influenced by working on The Walking Dead tv show and wanted to try whole “writer’s room” approach.

As a writer, a fan of tv writing and a comic fan, I thought that this was an experiment that I wanted to experience. Plus it was going to be a crime book about heists, and who doesn’t love heists?

Honestly, it paid off. Thief of Thieves is one of those consistent books that delivers month after month, due in no small part to Shawn Martinbrough’s art. It’s always on the top of my reading pile.

Another book that I tried out, a little bit after it’s debut, was Hawkeye. Being a Marvel comic, Hawkeye was a bit outside of my area of comfort. But I’d heard nothing but great things about the title and when Marvel was giving away their free #1 issues, digitally, I snatched up Hawkeye #1.

I was immediately hooked.

I can’t say anything about the book that hasn’t been said a dozen times before and months ago. But I will say that I ran out and grabbed the first trade and all subsequent issues. Obviously everyone loves the book and it’s a huge seller. But I’ve got to say, I’m glad to finally find something that everyone’s raving about that actually lives up to the hype.

Bedlam is another book that I picked up when it debuted. I’d enjoyed what I’d read of Nick Spencer and really wanted to see what he could do when left to his own devices.

Thus far, it’s been an interesting ride. Riley Rossmo’s art is incredibly creepy, which fits the story perfectly. The story can be disjointing at times, mainly because it’s hard to know if you want to root for the protagonist or not. Still, I’m sticking around to see where things go.

Of course not everything work out. I tried out Red Team and I’m still struggling to work my way though the second issue.

I seriously cannot catch the rhythm of the dialogue. I get what Garth Ennis is aiming for, but it’s really not clicking with me. I think The Wire is probably television at it’s highest form, I’m forcing my cousin to watch The Shield and I love 100 Bullets, but Red Team just doesn’t work.

I will try to give it another shot in the near future.

Most recently I’ve tried out Ten Grand. I’m hardly the biggest JMS fan, though I did enjoy his aborted run on Supreme Power. I do enjoy Ben Templesmith’s art though, which is really why I picked it up. Man, I miss Fell.

Ten Grand is…interesting. Templesmith’s art is fantastic; it really sets the tone for the book. JMS’s plot is pretty compelling, though his scripting can be trite at times. It’s not a book I’d recommend for everyone, but I’m digging it for the most part.

I guess my basic point this week, is that your comfort zone can be stifling at times. Now really is a great time to be a comic book fan. There’s literally something for everyone. Small press books take interesting risks. Image offers up some very original concepts and Vertigo is headed towards a relaunch.

Go out and try something new, so you can be the one who’s saying to your friends “yeah, the movie/tv show is good, but you should try out the comic it’s based on.”

Anyway, that’s all for me this week. It’s Wednesday, go out and buy some new comics!

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,