The Boys 39 (February 2010)


Ennis is tying some stuff up–or at least buying the laces–with McCrea and Burns on the art. It’s not the right issue for them, it’s all way too mundane.

Butcher finally finds out about Annie, Frenchie tries to get the Female hooked on 2000 AD, we find out Mother’s Milk has some issues from his childhood. I think that list about covers it.

The best writing Ennis does in the comic is for Annie though. Hughie’s got bad dreams, but it doesn’t amount to much. Ennis saves all the good lines for Annie–and a couple for Butcher, obviously–and one has to feel bad she’s not a more central character.

I mean, he writes her not just the best arc for the issue, but the comic lines are just amazing. Hughie doesn’t deserve her. Ennis has done amazing things with her character.

Anyway, it’s good but problematic.


What I Know; writer, Garth Ennis; artists, John McCrea and Keith Burns; colorist, Tony Aviña; letterer, Simon Bowland; editor, Joseph Rybandt; publisher, Dynamite Entertainment.


Fury: My War Gone By 11 (June 2013)

Fury MAX Vol 1 11

And here Nick figures out what Barracuda’s been doing.

The senator and Nick’s girlfriend have a big blow out too–lots about all the years gone by, which feels somewhat forced. Ennis writes all his scenes quite well, but his timing of them is questionable. Why the senator and the girlfriend are having the fight now, why Nick hasn’t made a smart ass remark to his sidekick in fifteen years. All contrived for maximum effect.

It might just have been impossible for Ennis to do the story straight. He’s dealing with a brand character, after all. But dropping Nick Fury into history makes a lot more sense if Nick can change history–the implication being he did so during World War II. Now he’s just a spectator.

It’s a well-written comic, but the concept has failed.

There’s nothing left to care about or anticipate anymore. The thrill is gone.


My Brother Earned His Medals at My Lai in Vietnam; writer, Garth Ennis; artist, Goran Parlov; colorist, Lee Loughridge; letterer, Rob Steen; editor, Nick Lowe; publisher, MAX.

Swamp Thing 170 (September 1996)


Poor Chester and Liz, they only get a page together. But Millar does give Chester just about the only joke in the entire issue.

It’s Alec–turned into a human Alec Holland again–versus the Word. The Word is the embodiment of God’s power (they call him the Voice here, probably as not to alienate any readers). But there’s a lot with Woodrue and all the experimenting his plans on doing to Tefè. She’s seven, it turns out, which means Millar did play a whole lot with the internal timeline logic.

Then there’s some stuff with Abby and Constantine, who are always interesting together. Millar does well with their scene, which is rather important because it’s unclear how honest Alec’s being in his scene.

There’s quite a bit about Tefè’s new origin. It’s Millar’s biggest change. He works hard to sell it and… for the most part, achieves that goal.


Trial by Fire, Part Five: Apocalypse Now; writer, Mark Millar; penciller, Phil Hester; inker, Kim DeMulder; colorist, Tatjana Wood; letterer, Richard Starkings; editor, Stuart Moore; publisher, Vertigo.

The Private Eye 3 (28 June 2013)

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Well, it’s better than the second issue anyway.

It’s a bridging issue, it turns out at the end. The private investigator is going to take the case, the sister is going along with him. His grandfather has some funny lines.

Vaughan opens the issue with a flashback to the protagonist’s childhood. Apparently his mom was into kinky sex and died on her way home on night–Bruce Wayne he ain’t. Anyway, it’s hard to read the comic’s gender politics. There haven’t been any positive characters male or female….

Then there’s a flashback to the previous issue’s cliffhanger. Vaughan does a fine job wrapping it all around itself; except he only does it to retroactively add another cliffhanger.

There’s some goofy stuff about future TV and then the bad guy reveals he’s stolen a nuke from an eighties movie.

As usual, it’s passable thanks to Martin’s art… and because it’s cheap.


Writer, Brian K. Vaughan; artist, Marcos Martin; colorist, Muntsa Vicente; publisher, Panel Syndicate.

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