We live in a time when men claim to be great in their rhetoric but their actions say otherwise. And even though they claims for these men are confirmed false, they still have thousands of die hard supporters. If only we had a silver alien from another planet to testify to humanity and call out these false saviors.
Unfortunately, this is the real world so we won’t get the Silver Surfers help but we have the next best thing: Silver Surfer: Parable – the collected trade by Stan Lee and Moebius (Jean Giraud) published originally by Epic Comics and later collected in trade by Marvel. Maybe if we can convince everyone on the planet to read this comic, we will have less strife in the world.
Silver Surfer: Parable is a really great read. The immediate attraction is the great Moebius art. His unique and detailed take of Galactus and the Silver Surfer are fantastic. You also are getting Stan Lee writing a comic in almost 20 years. Stan Lee is at his peak with the dialogue through the 2 issues. This was written in the late 80s were the rule of the land according to Wall Street’s Gordon Gecko was “Greed is good.” Lee and Moebius put out a book that stated beware false idols that espoused avarice and power because they will lead to your downfall.
I am reviewing it 30 later and the message still needs to be broadcast to all people and is as relevant as ever. If you have never read this, go out and purchase it. It is a book you will be revisiting many time over.
In the podcast, I go over the history of the Silver Surfer and Galactus from Fantastic Four #48 and how it relates to this updated version in Parable. I talk about how Stan Lee and Jack Kirby created the Silver Surfer using the Marvel Method and how Stan pitched the Marvel Method to Moebius for Parable and how Moebius was stunned at this process. I then go into talking about the story.
Alien Legion is a comic that was originally produced by Epic Comics imprint under Marvel Comics in 1984. It was created by writers Carl Potts and Alan Zelenetz with artist Frank Cirocco. Potts described the story “The French Foreign Legion in space”.
The original series ran for about 18 issues and was relaunched with writer Chuck Dixon and artist Larry Stroman. This series would be cancelled after a year but Alien Legion would make sporadic appearances as prestige miniseries through the 1990s.
My exposure to Alien Legion was Chuck Dixon and Larry Stroman’s run on it. I enjoyed their stories very much in the 90s when I read them. I bought some Trade collections that were put out by Titan Books in the early 2000s. Tonight, I am reviewing a re-read of the story Alien Legion: Tenants in Hell by Dixon/Stroman.
Tenants in Hell was a fun re-read. As I mention in the podcast, it felt like a very 90s comic: references to Cyberpunk and Corporatism. Grim and Dark situations and characters. Total Nihilism and hope is for losers. I enjoyed these stories in my youth but they seem a bit rote in my re-read. These are still entertaining stories by they are reminders of a different time and seem antiquated now.
I keep the review mostly spoiler free but this is only a 2 part miniseries. There are plenty of Alien Legion stories out there if you want to read more.
It is Jon’s birthday today (wish him a happy one), I gave him the opportunity to pick what ever comic related item he wanted to cover for the podcast. He kept the Dystopian Futures theme going by picking Akira – the anime movie to review.
For those that are not familiar with Akira, here is a little background on the material. It is based on a 1982 Manga series by Katsuhiro Otomo. As it was published in Japan, Marvel picked up the rights to distribute it in America under their Epic imprint. In 1988, Katsuhiro Otomo directed the anime version of the movie. At the time, it cost $5 million dollars to make and was the most expensive animated movie to date. Akira is an epic tale about teen angst, political corruption, family and friendship that ends in a giant psychic battle.
This may be one of the most influential movies of all time. You can see elements of the movie being emulated in other animated shows. Here is a quick clip of Kaneda sliding on his bike how many other shows pay homage to it.
There was talk of an American live action version of Akira in early 2000s but this never happened. Here is what it would have looked like…
Akira is a great movie (and even greater manga) but it does get a little convoluted in the end. I have seen the movie multiple times but still cannot figure out the ending. Jon and I still highly recommend watching it because it still holds up.
We will be doing Dystopian Futures for the near future because in comics, there are hundreds of dystopian future comics and we want to talk about most of them.
This week, we are talking about an Epic Comic that is not really well known called The Last American. It was written by John Wagner and Alan Grant with art from Mike (Mick) McMahon. All 3 creators are based in the UK and created a comic that is an American Cautionary Tale.
The Last American is a 4 issue miniseries originally released by Marvel’s Epic Imprint but it has been reprinted in Trade Paperback by Com.X and 2000 AD Press. It tells the story of soldier, Ulysses Pilgrim who happens to be the last American after a nuclear war. It graphically depicts what the world would look like if there was an actual nuclear war. Is Pilgrim the actual last American or are there others?
It is a fast and frightening read that was really relevant in 1990 which was the height of the Cold War but the story still is relevant today to show you this is what could happen if we were to stockpile nuclear weapons.
If you are a fan of books like The Road and movies like The Moon, then you will really like The Last American.
We’re back with another podcast covering comics and this week, we will be talking about a favorite of mine. A 6 issue miniseries called The One written and art by Rick Veitch.
The One was published under Marvel’s imprint called Epic Comics. Epic Comics was a creator owned comic that had the publishing support of Marvel Comics. We did a 2 part podcast on Epic Comics – they were known for telling mature, thought provoking stories that were different than the main stream superhero comics.
Here are some of the covers to The One…
I was a teenage in 1985 and I remember seeing the cover for issue #1 of the One (It’s a Tide parody) and wanting to know what this comic was all about.
Jon and I are reviewing the trade paperback that was self published through Rick Veitch under his imprint King Hell Publishing. The trade is in black and white but the original Epic Comics were in color.
The One is full of commentary on superhero comics, politics and religion. It was published before Watchmen, The Dark Knight Returns and I think most of Miracle Man. Rick explored what would our world really be like if governments really created superheroes. It is a fun story that Jon and I only scratch the surf of reviewing.
If you are interested in reading this comic, you can buy it digitally here through IDW Publishing. We highly recommend checking it out.