Thursday, July 02, 2009

Required Reading: Warren Ellis Edition

Black Summer by Warren Ellis / Juan Jose Ryp

Author of the NY Times bestseller Crooked Little Vein delivers this graphic novel dealing with relatively disturbing ideas. Let's say you are a superhero who truly believes in truth, justice and the American Way. And let's say the President of the United States indulges in torture and illegal wars and gives no-bid contracts to mercenaries who are more interested in enforcing the terms of those contracts than protecting the US Constitution? And when faced with the truth of the situation the American public does nothing about it. What do you do?

Well, in Black Summer, the hero kills the President and insists Americans have another election. As predicted, all kinds of craziness breaks out. His old team comes out of retirement, a new secret team of heroes that are government operatives is activated, and caught in between all his is our military and us.

Freakangels Vol. 1 & 2
by Warren Ellis/Paul Duffield

This is a free weekly ongoing webcomic. But after so many installments, it's collected into a graphic novel, and there are two out so far. The Freakangels are a group of people with unusual and mysterious powers that are protecting a section of a city and it's population in a post-apocalyptic world. Oh, and unbeknownst to those they protect, they are accidentally responsible for the apocalypse. The Freakangels are reminiscent of the Endless from Neil Gaiman's acclaimed Sandman series, but much more human. Some are crazy, some are depraved, and at least one is just plain bad. Paul Duffield's art is subtle but charming - a European style that at first seems plain but then reveals itself to be gorgeous.

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