Saturday, November 10, 2007

Heist Books

This month at comic club, we read (and I'd imagine some re-read) Matt Fraction's Last of the Independents. For anyone who hasn't read it, I definitely recommend it. (In fact I'd say that I heartily recommend it, except I'm about the only person who uses the world heartily.) It's a very accessible and easy to read story. (Truth be told you can blow through it very quickly. The story may not have much depth but the characters are fully realized and Kieron Dwyer's art is spot-on perfect for the material.)

I remember one of the things that struck me most solidly was the very fact that it was a heist book. Our protagonists are bank robbers. And after looking at my stack of books this week, I realize that it's not as if that was the only heist story I'm reading.

I'm speaking, of course, of MODOK's 11.

I think that might have to be my pick for the week. It's a tough week to pick a single book though. I mean, we've got the first chapter of Annihilation: Conquest which in which we learn that the High Evolutionary has apparently gotten bored of messing around with Terran species and moved on up to the Kree. Astonishing X-Men deigns to grace us with it's presence. (It's tardiness is only excused by the fact that I'm really enjoying the story.) We've got the early chapters of not just one 'event' but two... one from each of the big two. But for my money, MODOK's 11 was just plain the most fun I had reading this week. That's not to say that The Order was bad... it was great, really great. But there's a sense of fun that I think seems to get lost in a lot of contemporary comics. It's the joy I get in reading Cable/Deadpool. It doesn't take itself too seriously.

It's funny, because early on I think I mentally lumped MODOK's 11 in with Identity Disk. I enjoyed that book, but if you've ever seen The Usual Suspects by Brian Singer, the story beats in ID come just a little too predictably.

Last of the Independents may read a lot like 'old' 70's heist films, as was frequently pointed out at the club meeting, but at a guess I'd say it doesn't take too much inspiration from any single source. That's a lesson Identity Disk should have taken to heart.

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