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I am a comic book collector and happy to be one. I might say “proud” if I hadn’t, over a year ago, switched to reading digital as opposed to print comics. I feel a bit robbed of the tactile sensations of the hobby – of the turn of the page, the sneaking look to the panel a page over, the bagging and shorting and stacking and filing. Though I read my comics in a different medium than I used to, I still treat each Wednesday (comic book delivery day to specialty shops around the country) as different from the other days of the week. I subscribe and now, rather than go to the comic store to be handed the books pulled for my “Hold Slot,” I click a button on my iPad and watch them download.
Then I read them.
Rare is the week that I don’t read them all between Wednesdays and some weeks I have, well… let’s just say more comic books in my digital downloads than a grown man should. Comic book legend Will Eisner (creator of The Spirit) is one of the most influential men even to put pencil to drawing board in the pursuit of making comics. So influential was he that the industry awards (think the Oscars or the Emmys or the Grammys) are named The Eisner Awards. He called comic books “sequential art,” perhaps because he became embarrassed by his profession when he had to admit what he did for a living. This is my weekly reaction to the comics I read.
Comics I Read Last Week:
The best comic I read last week was Batman #47.
Writers: Tom King
Artist: Tony Daniel
After reading only 4 comics last week, I had a more typical number this week and the books were all very good. There were a number of compelling titles this week including New Challengers and No Justice, but the conclusion of the arc entitled “The Gift” in Batman was too perfect (and heartbreaking) to pass up.
Tony Daniel belongs on Batman. His refined style and expressive work is a terrific compliment to the caped crusader. That he is back on the book with a more developed and confident approach than he used when he was working with Grant Morrison a few years back in one of the craziest of Batman heydays serves to establish him as one of the best Batman artists of a generation. His work alone is reason to buy the book.
Tom King wraps up the penultimate chapter of the wedding of Batman and Catwoman by doing something that I would have thought was impossible: he made Batman’s origin even more gut wrenching. The addition to the story, for as long as it lasts before some other writer comes along to continuity wipe it, is so perfectly Batman and so deliciously tragic. King’s Batman has been spot on and, what I most like about what he is doing, is that each arc he has written offers a different flavor and different take on the character. With King writing, the reader never knows what to expect.
That is a very good thing and this is a very good and very consistent book.