Saturday, May 22, 2010

Comic Book Issues – Nemesis 1

I don’t really know what I was expecting from this book. We got it mainly for my fiancé because he greatly enjoyed Kickass (although he was very displeased by the delays). I personally liked the premise of an evil, crazy Batman/Joker combo. But I don’t feel this first issue delivered.

I like Blake Morrow. I feel the comic did a good job of setting him up to be the one to face off against this crazy criminal mind. But Nemesis himself didn’t impress me as much. The opening was great. I felt that he was a threat and a large one at that. A very calculating criminal mind. But the scene later with Air Force One simply left me cold. I’ll buy that you knew how to explode a building to make it fall over in the direction of train tracks. I won’t buy that you can walk around on an airplane in flight with no equipment without falling off. And that you can walk all the way down to the nose from the wing. But I’d be willing to overlook that. Surely he did have some sort of special equipment that we just weren’t shown.

But then he crash lands the plane, mini explodes it as it goes under a bridge, and then big explodes it when it hits a “petrol” container. First of all, if you are setting your story in America the truck should have read Gasoline. I get that the writer is Scottish, but I expect him to know the difference. Maybe this is nitpicky. Maybe they do label these truck petrol and not gasoline sometimes in the states, but it distracted me. It was enough to take me out of the story. But my main complaint is that we don’t see Nemesis get out of the plane. Later we get to see that he is alive and well (and seems not to have suffered a single scratch in the whole affair) oh, and he also got the President off the plane as well and now has him hostage. Wait. So I’m supposed to believe that he not only was able to get away, but that he was able to get a hostage out in all that commotion too? During a crash landing?

This would have been a great place to show me how cool Nemesis was. Instead I just feel like the comic is telling me Nemesis is cool because the story says so. It goes back to the old showing versus telling argument. This comic tells me that Nemesis got off the plane with the President instead of showing me how he did it. The fact that he got off the plane was, I guess, supposed to be shocking and amazing. But since he’s the title character I was never really nervous that he wasn’t going to get off the plane. So its not shocking. And since I don’t get to see how it happened it isn’t amazing to me. It’s more magic than anything. And since they were going for kind of evil Batman, I have a feeling magic wasn’t what they were going for.

If the plane had not exploded none of this would bother me really. Then it would just have been a case of getting away during the chaos and confusion following the crash. I buy that. But with the explosion none of that makes sense to me.

Also, the gore in this issue was silly to me at times. The shootout in the hostage situation made me wonder what kind of magic exploding bullets Morrow was using since the people’s heads seemed to be exploding. I could be wrong, I’m not a gun expert, but as far as I know more entry wounds are pretty small. The exit wounds are gruesome and would be more explosive and bloody. But these guys’ heads seemed to just be bursting from the inside. I’m not adverse to blood and violence in my comics, I like that people who get shot do in fact bleed. But I don’t like it to be gratuitous and silly. Again it takes me out of the story.

Overall I felt like this was a pretty sad start to the mini. And with only four issues it has a lot of work to do to win me over.

1 comment:

  1. I've become less and less impressed with Mark Millar. This displeases me because his run on Ultimates and Ultimate X-men were part of what got me really into comics during high school. But between Wanted, Kick-Ass, Nemesis, and the Red Skull arc on Ultimate Comics Avengers, I just get a sense of "trying waaaaay too hard."

    If I want over-the-top violence and offensiveness, I'm gonna stick to Garth Ennis, thank you very much. Preacher didn't disappoint me as badly as any of MM's stuff.