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Which is the better Comic Book. 
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Post Which is the better Comic Book.
I have just gone through three major comic books which are as follows
Dark Knight Returns
The Preacher
Watchmen.
300
The Hard Goodbye (sin city)

I nwas wondering if anyone else has read the same comic books.
After reading all 4 I have decided the following:

Frank Miller is the most important comic book creator of our time.
He has created 3 of the most impressive comic from the last 20 years

I would be interested in hearing anyone elses views


Wed Jan 13, 2010 6:11 am
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
Of those, I would say Watchmen, hands down. I have read it six or seven times, and each time, I keep find little bits I didn't see before.


If you have not read Neil Gaiman's Sandman, I can't recommend it enough. It is seriously amazing.


Wed Jan 13, 2010 1:01 pm
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
+1 on Watchmen.

I've only read that and The Dark Knight Returns from your list and I was ever so slightly disappointed with Dark Knight. I skimmed through 300 too, but it struck me that it's main asset was the gorgeous artwork. Based on my very limited reading I'd say Alan Moore is way better than Frank Miller.

Also, I literally just bought The complete Maus. It's supposed to be terrific.


Wed Jan 13, 2010 4:32 pm
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
First off, great topic. I have read all the above works and would say that out of the list you gave p604, I would have to say that the best comic is the Watchmen. I will never discredit Frank Miller's importance to the genre of graphic novels and comics, but Moore's ability to tell a story is very rarely rivaled especially in this genre. I would say that Gaiman is his only equal however the Watchmen, proves to be more dense.

If you're just getting into graphic novels, let me recommend a few more.

Fables
Y the Last Man
100 Bullets
The Astonishing X-Men
Hellblazer-most notably the Garth Ennis Arc
Alan Moore's Complete WildC.A.T.S


Wed Jan 13, 2010 6:50 pm
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
p604 wrote:
I have just gone through three major comic books which are as follows
Dark Knight Returns
The Preacher
Watchmen.
300
The Hard Goodbye (sin city)
Dude, are you drunk? Three comics? Four comics? Five comics?

I've not read the Preacher, so I have nothing to say about it. I will say that Watchmen is analogous to Hitchcock's famous quote about Psycho: it mesmerizes you with the power of pure comics. What people fail to realize about Watchmen is that it isn't about the story, which is essentially an ordinary superhero story told with exceptional attention to character. Watchmen is about comics, as much as Citizen Kane is about movies, as much as Hamlet is about plays. I love Watchmen for its pure, uncompromising crystallization of the comics medium.

The Dark Knight Returns isn't really comparable. While Frank Miller is a formidable master of the comics medium himself, DKR isn't nearly as forceful a statement as Watchmen in that regard. DKR is amazing for other reasons, chief among them being its utterly incendiary take on superheroes, vigilantism, and fascism. It has the balls to explore the darker side of the superhero archetype and pursue it to its logical conclusion. Miller dares to propose that Batman may not be right for what he does, but that it may be enough for him to be necessary. In form, DKR is no Watchmen, but it's still top-notch. In content, it's perhaps the most memorable and fascinating take on Batman ever.

300 isn't nearly up to snuff with either of them. As historical fiction, it takes some pretty extreme liberties. While it certainly has the chest-thumping adrenaline thing going for it, I can't see it as much more than well-crafted action porn. Miller deserves bonus points for his ingenious use of landscape-oriented panels, which he uses to full effect. It demonstrates that visual imagination in comics is just as important as in film or photography.

I wouldn't rank the Hard Goodbye at the top with them, either, although I do have a soft spot for it. It's my favorite Sin City story, and Marv is my favorite Sin City character. He's one of those rare characters who's a walking mess of contradictions that somehow balance out in his favor. Rather than being slipshod or unsympathetic, he becomes fascinating... even if he is just the logical outcome of the Frank Miller, Batman/Leonidas, barrel-chested, cape-dragging archetype. And, as with any Sin City book, Miller's "Bigfoot" chiaroscuro artwork is incredible.

As for Frank Miller being "most important," that's hogwash. I love the guy, but his relevance has waned sharply over the years. If you're looking for who's most important now, it's up for grabs, though Alan Moore's endurance and refusal to settle into a careerist rut must be admired. In addition to his other qualities, of course.

If you're looking for who's most important ever, I'd like to see anybody make a good case that it isn't Will Eisner.

EDIT:

Everybody else is recommending titles/series, so why not?

A Contract With God, by Will Eisner
From Hell, by Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell
The Sandman, by Neil Gaiman and damn near every artist in the industry
All Star Superman, by Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely
Maus, by Art Spiegelman
Understanding Comics, by Scott McCloud (while it's a book about comics, it's also a comic, period)
Ex Machina, by Brian K. Vaughn and Tony Harris
The Spirit, by Will Eisner (go for the post-WWII volumes; they're the best)
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, by Alan Moore and Kevin O'Neil

EDIT #2:

And pardon my linguistic fascism, but if you're discussing more than two items, you want to use superlatives rather than comparatives. The thread title would more appropriately be "Which is the best comic book?"


Thu Jan 14, 2010 12:06 am
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
Couldn't agree more Ken. While I do believe Will Eisner is to Graphic Novels what Jesus Chirst is to Christianity I still hold to my argument that Alan Moore is the best story teller in the medium.

Also Ken judging from the comic selection you've read, Preacher is a must read. Garth Ennis is as dark, perverted, and obscene as one man can be and his comics don't hold back. Preacher is the story of a man (a Preacher obviously) who goes on a personal vendetta to find and confront God, not through prayer or through church but to actually sit down and confront him. It's remarkable.


Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:45 am
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
I read Watchmen for the first time in '04 or '05 and liked it a lot. After the movie came out I revisited it and actually didn't care for it as much.

Dark Knight Returns is one of the best comic experiences one can hope for.


Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:15 pm
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
Out of those I'd say Watchmen hands down. I'm sorry to say I don't have that much love for Miller. I'm a big fan of Batman: Year One, and I like the Sin City stories, but that's really where my love begins and ends. 300 didn't do anything for me, and I don't care at all for DKR. Beyond that, I haven't really felt any need to read any of his other works.

If you like Frank Miller, the Criminal series is one that's worth looking out for. It's all about bad people doing bad things. I love it. Heck, I love just about anything Brubaker writes. Like with Sin City, each arc is somewhat self contained, but everything occurs within the same universe. Pick up any of the trades currently out there and you'll be just fine. Darwyn Cooke's adaption of The Hunter is another great one. I love, love, love Cooke's artwork, and The Hunter is a classic crime story. He's planning to adapt each of the Parker novels (of which The Hunter is the first) once per year. If it wasn't for Asterios Polyp, I'd say The Hunter was the best comic I read last year.

I've got a massive list of comics I'd be happy to reccomend, but I kinda doubt you'd be interested in the majority of them. But if you're looking for a crime story fix after Sin City, those are a great place to start.

Threads like this always serve to remind me that I've only really read a few of the "classics" people always reccomend. I need to read the complete Maus at some point, and Watchmen is still the only Alan Moore comic I've read from start to finish. I'm a pretty prolific comic reader, but I tend to drift more towards lesser known books.


Tue Jan 19, 2010 11:12 pm
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
I recently started reading Powers by Brian Michael Bendis. I read the first two arcs via TPB and have really enjoyed myself. I would like to see a little more development with the main character, Christian Walker a detective in a city that has a host of super heroes and villians, but I love the art and the writer doesn't really tip much of his hand in each TPB volume so this series could go for a long time.


Mon Feb 01, 2010 9:49 pm
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
The Preacher is brilliant. Must read.

Watchmen is probably my favourite of all time together with Sandman.

Am about half way through 100 Bullets and just recently finished Y The Last man enjoying them both.

Can't go wrong with Batman either, TDK, Year One, Knightfall, NML so much good stuff.


Fri Feb 05, 2010 10:57 am
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
I'll expound a little on my recommendation for All Star Superman, because I've just read that DC is planning an Absolute Edition.

While I am an avid reader of comics, I generally stay away from the monthly publications. (I think the last issue I bought was in 1998--a Spider-Man, if I remember. It had Tombstone in it, but I don't remember anything else about it.) Recently, I made exception for All Star Superman, a miniseries which brought me back to the comic shops for its entire 12 issue run. It is a fantastic story. It's a reminder that superheroes can still be fun, but can also be written on the level of classic science fiction and fantasy.

For anyone who ever asked "What's so great about Superman," this is the answer.

(And for anyone who doesn't want to break the bank and their coffee table top with the Absolute Edition, All Star Superman is already available in two collected volumes, in both hard and softcover.)


Sat Feb 06, 2010 4:27 pm
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
Ken wrote:
I'll expound a little on my recommendation for All Star Superman, because I've just read that DC is planning an Absolute Edition.

While I am an avid reader of comics, I generally stay away from the monthly publications. (I think the last issue I bought was in 1998--a Spider-Man, if I remember. It had Tombstone in it, but I don't remember anything else about it.) Recently, I made exception for All Star Superman, a miniseries which brought me back to the comic shops for its entire 12 issue run. It is a fantastic story. It's a reminder that superheroes can still be fun, but can also be written on the level of classic science fiction and fantasy.

For anyone who ever asked "What's so great about Superman," this is the answer.

(And for anyone who doesn't want to break the bank and their coffee table top with the Absolute Edition, All Star Superman is already available in two collected volumes, in both hard and softcover.)


Interesting link to iFanboy. They have a regular video series over at Revision3. I'm not a big comics guy, but I did look at a couple of episodes. It's good stuff.

http://revision3.com/ifanboy


Mon Feb 08, 2010 2:18 pm
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
Say I was a complete novice on Superman, knew absolutely nothing whatsoever about him. What books should I read in order to become an expert on him?


Tue Mar 02, 2010 11:39 pm
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
Victor Meldrew wrote:
Say I was a complete novice on Superman, knew absolutely nothing whatsoever about him. What books should I read in order to become an expert on him?
Depends. What you should know, right off, is that certain elements of the character have flexed with the times. My personal opinion is that to know Superman, you have to A. be aware of his presence in multiple media, and B. follow the arc of American culture, which Superman tends to reflect.

Here's a quick crash course:

Action Comics #1. The famous first appearance of Superman, predating every superhero. You don't even need to buy it--it's right there, online.

The Max Fleischer cartoons. These are all up on YouTube, I believe. They're short animated movies from the 1940s that they used to show before features, and they're really well animated. They're not the most story-driven movies out there, but they're full of the atmosphere of the character. If you've seen Batman: The Animated Series, these are the movies that inspired it. The action is wonderful.

Superman: The Movie. Most people have seen this, and depending on your stance, you may find it cheesy, charming, or both. Either way, Christopher Reeve encapsulates the sincerity and goodness of the character. Plus, his physical performance is severely underrated. Anybody who can make flying look so natural and graceful while there's a harness biting into his groin deserves an Oscar.

As far as comics go, there are a couple of collected volumes you should look at: Superman In the 60s, and The Greatest Stories Ever Told. While the storytelling and printing sophistication had a ways to go, I would say the character really crystallized in the 1960s. He's at the height of his physical power, but the stories often reveal that physical power alone isn't enough to confront the kinds of issues faced by the Man of Steel.

Once you've felt out the Superman mythology a little, there are a few somewhat more modern treats. There are a couple of stories by Alan Moore, which are collected in The DC Universe Stories of Alan Moore. They draw heavily on the decades of elements that have been established, and serve very much as a tribute to the character. They're also damn good stories in and of themselves. If you've read any of Alan Moore's stuff, his writing really sparkles.

Then there's All Star Superman. I've mentioned it already, but I'll talk about it some more. It's a very recent 12 part story arc by Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely. It basically takes the Alan Moore idea of unpacking the mythology and runs with it. This is, in my opinion, the superhero genre's finest hour. Like The Dark Knight Returns or Watchmen, this is a sophisticated story with something to say, but it adds a heavy dose of the sci-fi/fantasy sense of wonder from the older comics. The beauty is that it stands apart from any other stories, unattached to continuity, so you could read it on its own. But knowing some of the history of the character enriches it greatly.

If you want anymore recommendations, check out this article I wrote: part 1, part 2


Tue Mar 02, 2010 11:57 pm
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
Ken wrote:
Victor Meldrew wrote:
Say I was a complete novice on Superman, knew absolutely nothing whatsoever about him. What books should I read in order to become an expert on him?
Depends. What you should know, right off, is that certain elements of the character have flexed with the times. My personal opinion is that to know Superman, you have to A. be aware of his presence in multiple media, and B. follow the arc of American culture, which Superman tends to reflect.

Here's a quick crash course:

Action Comics #1. The famous first appearance of Superman, predating every superhero. You don't even need to buy it--it's right there, online.

The Max Fleischer cartoons. These are all up on YouTube, I believe. They're short animated movies from the 1940s that they used to show before features, and they're really well animated. They're not the most story-driven movies out there, but they're full of the atmosphere of the character. If you've seen Batman: The Animated Series, these are the movies that inspired it. The action is wonderful.

Superman: The Movie. Most people have seen this, and depending on your stance, you may find it cheesy, charming, or both. Either way, Christopher Reeve encapsulates the sincerity and goodness of the character. Plus, his physical performance is severely underrated. Anybody who can make flying look so natural and graceful while there's a harness biting into his groin deserves an Oscar.

As far as comics go, there are a couple of collected volumes you should look at: Superman In the 60s, and The Greatest Stories Ever Told. While the storytelling and printing sophistication had a ways to go, I would say the character really crystallized in the 1960s. He's at the height of his physical power, but the stories often reveal that physical power alone isn't enough to confront the kinds of issues faced by the Man of Steel.

Once you've felt out the Superman mythology a little, there are a few somewhat more modern treats. There are a couple of stories by Alan Moore, which are collected in The DC Universe Stories of Alan Moore. They draw heavily on the decades of elements that have been established, and serve very much as a tribute to the character. They're also damn good stories in and of themselves. If you've read any of Alan Moore's stuff, his writing really sparkles.

Then there's All Star Superman. I've mentioned it already, but I'll talk about it some more. It's a very recent 12 part story arc by Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely. It basically takes the Alan Moore idea of unpacking the mythology and runs with it. This is, in my opinion, the superhero genre's finest hour. Like The Dark Knight Returns or Watchmen, this is a sophisticated story with something to say, but it adds a heavy dose of the sci-fi/fantasy sense of wonder from the older comics. The beauty is that it stands apart from any other stories, unattached to continuity, so you could read it on its own. But knowing some of the history of the character enriches it greatly.

If you want anymore recommendations, check out this article I wrote: part 1, part 2


wow, jesus, thanks for that. i wasn't expecting all that info. thanks. i couldn't have asked for more.


Thu Mar 04, 2010 4:50 am
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
Victor Meldrew wrote:
wow, jesus, thanks for that. i wasn't expecting all that info. thanks. i couldn't have asked for more.


Hi there Victor. Ken is our resident Superman expert. I dunno if he likes being called Jesus though.


Thu Mar 04, 2010 2:43 pm
Post Re: Which is the better Comic Book.
Let me tell you something, pendejo. You pull any of your crazy shit with us, you flash a piece out on the lanes, I'll take it away from you, stick it up your ass and pull the fucking trigger 'til it goes "click."

Jesus.

You said it, man. Nobody fucks with the Jesus.


Thu Mar 04, 2010 9:11 pm
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