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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #21
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Patrick G.P
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Re: Favorite Graphic Novels?

I'm a big comic book fan, here are some favorites/recommendations of the top off my head:

Xavier Dorison: Sanctum (Very Lovecraftian, Highly recommended!)

Fred Van Lente: Weird Detective: The Stars are Wrong

Shawn Aldridge: Dark and Bloody

Alan Moore: Watchmen, Providence, DC Universe

Roger Stern: Spider-man (His entire run on the character)

Genndy Tartakovsky: Cage!

Neil Gaiman: Sandman

J.M. DeMatteis: Spider-Man: Kraven's Last Hunt

Stan Lee: Spider-Man (His entire run on the character)

Scott Snyder: Batman: The Black Mirror

Mike Mignola: Hellboy, Witchfinder

Jeph Loeb: Batman: The Long Halloween

Garth Ennis: Hellblazer: Dangerous Habits

Frank Miller: Batman: Year One

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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #22
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Re: Favorite Graphic Novels?

The later works of Yoshihiro Tatsumi are incredibly dark and pessimistic. Especially this particular story about Hiroshima, which goes in a very different direction than one would usually expect. A Drifting Life is huge, and one I remember as being a very special read.
Others I like are Junji Ito, Asano Inio, and Rumiko Takahashi. Asano Inio especially has a grim (realistic) view of the world, perhaps even more terrifying than Junji Ito in some ways.
I've enjoyed the few parts of Sandman I've read, I should really get back to it.
Glad to see Calvin & Hobbes mentioned quite a bit, it's a favorite of mine as well.

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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #23
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Re: Favorite Graphic Novels?

Quote Originally Posted by Patrick G.P View Post
I'm a big comic book fan, here are some favorites/recommendations of the top off my head:

Xavier Dorison: Sanctum (Very Lovecraftian, Highly recommended!)

Fred Van Lente: Weird Detective: The Stars are Wrong

Shawn Aldridge: Dark and Bloody

Alan Moore: Watchmen, Providence, DC Universe

Roger Stern: Spider-man (His entire run on the character)

Genndy Tartakovsky: Cage!

Neil Gaiman: Sandman

J.M. DeMatteis: Spider-Man: Kraven's Last Hunt

Stan Lee: Spider-Man (His entire run on the character)

Scott Snyder: Batman: The Black Mirror

Mike Mignola: Hellboy, Witchfinder

Jeph Loeb: Batman: The Long Halloween

Garth Ennis: Hellblazer: Dangerous Habits

Frank Miller: Batman: Year One
A nice list, which nevertheless neglects to mention the artist in many cases. No comics without those who put in the hours to make it all visible. Imagine writing 'the army marched over the crest of the hill.' No sooner said than done. Now imagine having to draw it, horse by horse, saddle by saddle, rock by rock...

"What can a thing do with a thing, when it is a thing?"
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #24
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Re: Favorite Graphic Novels?

Quote Originally Posted by Ibrahim View Post
A nice list, which nevertheless neglects to mention the artist in many cases. No comics without those who put in the hours to make it all visible. Imagine writing 'the army marched over the crest of the hill.' No sooner said than done. Now imagine having to draw it, horse by horse, saddle by saddle, rock by rock...
You are absolutely right of course. The artist goes a very long way in compiling my list of favorites, so here they are:

Sanctum - Christophe Bec
Weird Detective - Guiu Vilanova
Dark and Bloody - Scott Godlewski
Watchmen - Dave Gibbons
Providence - Jacen Burrows
Dc Universe - Diverse (This is a collection of Moore's early DC stuff)
Spider-Man - Steve Ditko, John Romita Sr among others
Sandman - Diverse (though love Sam Keith's artwork)
Batman: Dark Mirror - Jock, Francesco Francavilla
Batman: The Long Halloween - Tim Sale (Love his work on Batman)
Batman: Year One - David Mazzucchelli
Hellblazer: Dangerous Habits - Will Simpson

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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #25
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Re: Favorite Graphic Novels?

Much of the time either the artist or the writer is doing most of the wowing.

I don't think Spiderman would be much at all without Ditko, Romita and Gil Kane. I've yet to see anyone make much of a case for Stan Lee as a writer. Take his classic collaborators away from him (who were often plotting the stories) and how many good comics are you left with?

Alan Moore and a lot of the writers who followed him often outshine their artists.

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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #26
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Re: Favorite Graphic Novels?

Quote Originally Posted by Robert Adam Gilmour View Post
Much of the time either the artist or the writer is doing most of the wowing.

I don't think Spiderman would be much at all without Ditko, Romita and Gil Kane. I've yet to see anyone make much of a case for Stan Lee as a writer. Take his classic collaborators away from him (who were often plotting the stories) and how many good comics are you left with?

Alan Moore and a lot of the writers who followed him often outshine their artists.
I quite enjoy the early Spider-Man issues by Stan Lee in creating a down to-earth, relatable character. And the overall sense of fun in reading his earlier exploits is one of the things I like about Spider-Man and I think Lee was crucial to these aspects of the character. As you say, the artists often did as much with Spider-Man as Lee did in terms of plotting, and I feel when Romita takes over for Ditko, there is a shift in storytelling that is probably as much him as Lee.
Alan Moore, Garth Ennis, Neil Gaiman and the likes are in a whole other league when it comes to writing comics, and often outdid the artists they were working with. Many of the early DC stories of Moore are excellent examples of this.

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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #27
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Re: Favorite Graphic Novels?

Quote Originally Posted by Patrick G.P View Post
I quite enjoy the early Spider-Man issues by Stan Lee in creating a down to-earth, relatable character. And the overall sense of fun in reading his earlier exploits is one of the things I like about Spider-Man and I think Lee was crucial to these aspects of the character. As you say, the artists often did as much with Spider-Man as Lee did in terms of plotting, and I feel when Romita takes over for Ditko, there is a shift in storytelling that is probably as much him as Lee.
I don't know when it started but Stan Lee and his artists plotted stories together until maybe about 1965 when he mostly handed plotting duties to the artists, by then his involvement would vary and sometimes he'd control the plot more.
It seems in the last few decades he has quite minimal involvement in a lot of his projects.

It's generally thought that Spiderman would have been a lot colder if written by Ditko. Stan Lee had previously written loads of teen humour comics (similar to Archie) and it definitely contributes something distinct to Spiderman.
But there is speculation that Spiderman was deeply personal for Ditko and that he showed a side of himself that he never would again. Over Ditko's lifetime he gradually narrows his focus and drops a lot of things he used to excel at. His work grew colder with occasional interludes of kooky light hearted humour.

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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #28
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Re: Favorite Graphic Novels?

Quote Originally Posted by Robert Adam Gilmour View Post
I don't know when it started but Stan Lee and his artists plotted stories together until maybe about 1965 when he mostly handed plotting duties to the artists, by then his involvement would vary and sometimes he'd control the plot more.
It seems in the last few decades he has quite minimal involvement in a lot of his projects.

It's generally thought that Spiderman would have been a lot colder if written by Ditko. Stan Lee had previously written loads of teen humour comics (similar to Archie) and it definitely contributes something distinct to Spiderman.
But there is speculation that Spiderman was deeply personal for Ditko and that he showed a side of himself that he never would again. Over Ditko's lifetime he gradually narrows his focus and drops a lot of things he used to excel at. His work grew colder with occasional interludes of kooky light hearted humour.
Nice bit of info on Ditko, I have not read a lot of Ditko stuff besides Spider-Man sadly as I really love his artstyle, do you have any recommendations for titles I should check out?
In the Spider-Man omnibus editions, John Romita mentions how he and Lee would plot the stories and it seems Romita was heavily involved in this process as Lee had many titles to juggle .With many of the villains, Lee just gave Romita the name and let him do the rest. I seem to recall that Lee mentions much of the same with Ditko and was eager to give him a lot of credit for the early stories.

"For he who passes the gateways always wins a shadow, and never again can he be alone."
- H.P. Lovecraft
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #29
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Re: Favorite Graphic Novels?

I appreciated Ditko quite a bit.
During his Spiderman run, I sought out his earlier work for Marvel, many of those one-off stories he did with Lee, as well.
When Blue Beetle rebooted, I strung along because Ditko was the new illustrator.
His later works became too preachy for my tastes.
That, and I had lost interest in comics.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #30
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Re: Favorite Graphic Novels?

Why Is Stan Lee’s Legacy in Question?

This is a fairly good assessment of Stan Lee's career and abilities. However I would quibble with the claims about how much Lee is responsible for creating an older audience for comics or that he really saved the industry.

Comic strips in in newspapers and magazines have always had an adult audience as far as I know. There were various stabs at mature comics, some of which are only thought of as comics in retrospect. But EC and a few other comics of the late-40s to mid-50s spoke to a more sophisticated audience than Lee's superhero comics and a lot of the Underground Comix people had little interest in Marvel.
There have been mature comics from all over the world that probably owe nothing to Marvel. I think it's close to an inevitability that comic books for adults would happen in any country with a fairly healthy industry.

===

On Ditko recommendations...

This is not easy because I'm a huge fan of him, the quality of story and art and availability varies immensely.

At the top of the pile I'd say Essential Doctor Strange vol 1 (The art looks better in black and white than the colour reproductions available today) and Creepy Presents Steve Ditko (some of his absolute best art). These should even appeal in a Weird Tales way but not as well written of course.

If you'd like books about him with hundreds of images, Strange And Stranger: The World Of Steve Ditko and Ditko Unleashed are both very good. The latter is pretty expensive though, it's a museum companion.

Steve Ditko Archives vol 1 has some of his best horror art but later volumes are much more variable in quality.
I think all these comics are in public domain now, so you might want to get files of his work from titles like This Magazine Is Haunted and The Thing.

The IDW/Yoe Books collections Art Of Steve Ditko and Creativity Of Ditko are pretty good. Writing quality varies.

If you want his other superhero comics the Creeper and Shade The Changing Man omnibuses feature two of his coolest creations but the plots aren't very interesting generally.

Good collections of The Question and Mr A are harder to come by and much of his best work don't have good or accessible reprints.

Maybe none of it appeals, it really depends on how much you like his art and what type of writing you're happy with.

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