COMIC CRITIQUE reviews EPICS!
Here’s the write up from Comic Critique about the first issue of EPICS! Make sure to check out their web-site, http://www.ComicCritique.com for even more cool stuff!
Physical release September 15, 2012
(Amazon page here; Publisher page here)
Digital release September 26, 2012 (will appear at comiXology here)
It’s fitting that the brisk and engrossing new anthology series Epics is created by several art educators, since it schools us in the form of comics that dominated much of the medium’s first heyday, and the span of history that nurtured some of the archetypes pop most depends on.
Comics began as collections of short stories like the four found in Epics’ first issue, and stayed that way through the period of their greatest popularity; the time between America’s World War Two victory and the 1960s’ cultural revolution was the cradle of the kind of youth culture that has sustained comics and games and serial literature and blockbuster popcorn franchises ever since.
Set in 1959, the four stories, by staffers of the Kubert School of cartooning, are a fifth-dimensional attic of pulp Americana, immersing the reader vividly in the stark noir and garish grindhouse landscapes of Cold War tension and shadowy subcultural danger zones.
Anthony Marques’ Katyusha is blood-and-guts Soviet/Yankee rivalry at its looniest, with a hot war playing out against mythic skyscraper massifs in a presentiment of widescreen mayhem to come.
Fernando Ruiz’s The Iron Ghost is a colossus of clever storytelling bestriding humor and horror, as a cavalier scientist gets caught in his own prototype robot body while both the pathos of a mechanizing society and the pompous foolishness of his pseudoscientific assumptions and patriarchal workplace play out.
Fabio Redivo’s Drake is gleaming, gloomy hardboiled-P.I. classicism, the grimy foundation and underground to Katyusha’s grand towers.
The meta-masterwork of the batch is Bob Hardin’s A Racy Story, in which hotrod culture is embodied in an iconic — and iconoclastic — bad-girl ruler of the road doing battle with the ultimate reckless driver, a surreal Mr. Tomato-head Rat Fink variant she has to face down like an Old West gunfighter on the mythic toxin-snorting steel horses of the American endless-highway dreamworld.
Epics is the product of a triumphant Kickstarter campaign and has a digital edition, but befitting its century-spanning scope will timewarp to the age of print with a paper version in partnership with the adventurous A Wave Blue World imprint, known for its thought-provoking thrillers Adrenaline and American Terrorist. Katyusha and The Iron Ghost will also spin out into full-length ongoings (just to show the way we used to do it in the present), while Epics continues with a new theme each issue, launching who knows how many new old favorites with the challenges each legendary setting needs classic characters to rise to.
Posted on September 13, 2012, in Uncategorized and tagged A Racy Story, A Wave Blue World, Anthony Marques, Bob Hardin, Comic Critique, Drake, Epics, Fabio Redivo, Fernando Ruiz, Katyusha, The Iron Ghost. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.