Wednesday, December 17, 2008

first book review-ish in ages

Moments ago, sitting in the garage to avoid the rain, mostly enjoying a cigarette, I finally finished reading Watchmen.

The version we currently have is the collection of the entire story borrowed from Momma's boyfriend. He loved it. She loved it. Friend Franklin loved it and has been waiting for me to finish so he can talk to me/us about it. COD read it recently and apparently loved it.

So where should I start? I suppose I should just go ahead and admit that Watchmen left me feeling somewhat underwhelmed, especially in light of all the praise the book has gotten. Apparently I'm the only one who read the book and failed to leak a little into my pants.

The story was decent. The characters were mostly cool, and I did really like Rorschach. I liked the idea behind the costumed adventurers. It was in parts a fun study of what the world might have seen had these old style heroes been real, or perhaps it was a fun study in the reality of the lives of those people had they existed.

The art never did capture me. In my pre-children days, when I could afford comics, I was very much into a title or two, but like every other art type thing in my life I tend to go more for individual artists than genres. As an example, I don't like most country music made since sometime in the sixties, but I will listen to anything Dwight Yoakam does. I like even less hip hop, but Tribe Called Quest can do no wrong (maybe a little) in my book. With comics I've always been a fan of Frank Miller even if the movie version of Sin City did almost quite suck a lot. Paul Pope is also worth checking out if you like that sort of thing.

I wanted to enjoy it. I wanted to get and to feel the hype. In the end, the story ended up being kind of a let down. The plot was non existent till the end, and the pirate story? I get how the survivor's mental demise works in, but it and the text only pages almost seemed to exist to make the series longer. The end of course was the doozy, and that really just pissed me off. It almost felt as if the artist and writer suddenly realized they were only getting paid to write so many of the funny books and theyn realized they could either figure out a way to end it or write a few more for free.

As mentioned, Watchmen left me underwhelmed, non plussed if you will. I would probably recomend it for fans of super hero comics, but for fans looking for a little more out of their comics I would suggest they keep looking.

Next on my reading list is a book pressed upon my by Franklin, a book COD may well have an opinion on. I'll be starting Ben Bova's Privateers, probably within the hour. I can't guarantee a review at the end, but I'll try.

1 comment:

Franklin said...

The reason I think it was such a big deal to so many people was at the time it was written, there were not so many main stream comics that delved into issues so deep. The fact that the super heroes were people, rape, hate, fear, dementia.

Comics haven't up until recently in DC and Marvel (and by recently I mean the last 5 years)touched on things like this in detail. Inner turmoil and human aspects of the driving forces behind the actions super heroes aside from it being the "right thing to do" with an unwavering and stead-fast ethic of good and evil completely un-attainable to regular people. Batman is a caveat here but since the late eighties that was still KINDA the case.