Saturday, February 19, 2005

Forget Brad Pitt

Hungry Tiger Press has been publishing a multi-part comic book retelling of the Trojan War called Age of Bronze, which has gotten some favorable attention from the mainstream press. The editors Publisher's Weekly have included the second collected trade paperback "Sacrifice" (covering issues 10-19) among the Best Books of 2004! The title caught my eye while I was browsing the aisles at Million Year Picnic during my lunch break today, but as my time was limited I didn't take a peek - maybe tomorrow I'll check it out.

While I was there I did manage to pick up Astonishing X-Men #8 and Ex Machina: The First 100 Days, a gritty superhero title penned by my new favorite author, Brian Vaughn, who also created Y- The Last Man. Ex Machina is a story about the world's first superhero, who just so happens to become mayor of New York during a particularly trying time in the city's recent history. I've heard nothing but raves about it, and since I'm now a diehard fan of Y- The Last Man, I couldn't help but pick up the first collected volume of this new series.

Speaking of comics, my old friend Carl and I are thinking about collaborating on a graphic novel. Back in high school we used to play a superhero roleplaying game based on the Marvel Comics universe - it was a lot of rock-'em, sock-'em fun, but my gaming crew being what it was, there was a lot of character development as well, which made for a very cool, very deep overall story. The idea that we could make a halfway decent comic out of this stuff never really dawned on us until fairly recently.

My original concept was to take one of the characters in particular and flesh out his backstory, making him a figure across the ages who before his modern incarnation as a superhero was a champion fighting for the Byzantine Empire. Recent events in 2005, however, would cause him to start flashing back to those days, culminating in the return of an enemy that it took everything within him to defeat a thousand years ago. Meanwhile there's a lot of post-9/11 stuff going on, as well as the melodrama of the original superhero team being forced back together after a spectacular failure and parting that was less than amicable and carried on live television around the planet, to boot!

Anyhow, since I can't draw to save my life I would have to rely on Carl (and possible a hired gun, if this thing takes off) for the artwork. But I always wanted to write a graphic novel - with the right artist, the noirish fantasy setting for "Confessions" would also be perfect in a comic book format. Let's see if anyone bites for the actual novel first, though...

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