Monday, 29 October 2012

#84 JLA

Haven't been able to finish a book lately.  Mostly reading selections of theory and essays.  Got to say I am really not enjoying Derrida.  What is the deal with that guy?

The latest book I have been able to complete in my spare time, which is sparse these days, is the complete JLA run by Grant Morrison.  He came in and reinvigorated the Justice League of America with his frenetic impending disaster narrative style.  The book was exhausting with each page bringing in another element of armageddon and it wouldn't relent.  I have rarely read such a sustained effort to overwhelm a reader than this book.  These were not simple capers, but evil designed and placed throughout time and dimensional universes which sometimes threatened spacetime itself.  Few books set out at such a fast pace and maintain that speed for 41 issues.  There was never time between world saving exploits for friendly banter or rest.  Right on the heels came another global threat.  I must say the experience was something that I am glad to have gone  through, but I could not sustain myself on comics like these, I think I like a slower pace these days.

Morrison's JLA: Earth 2 is the slower pace I enjoy.  Here the characters are more important and dialogue is not occurring amidst a galactic battle.  The drawings are by Frank Quitely, and absolutely beautiful.  This is the storytelling I can love, and a pace that doesn't overwhelm.  These are characters that deserve sympathy because they emote a sense of the real.  I wonder if Morrison wrote this as a contrast.  If his JLA was a statement of what he felt comics have become by exaggerating it in a sort of parody.  The pace is unlike anything he has done before, perhaps he was making a point.

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Getting busy

This is more of a list than anything.  Finding time to make entries is getting difficult these days between teaching class, going to class, reading for class, making presentations, and writing papers.  I thought this was going to be a vacation...well not really.

81- Understanding Comics by Scott Macloud.  Great theoretical graphic novel trying to show how the reader interprets the images and words on the comic page.  Some really abstract information in here.  Was really pleased with what I was able to take away from this.

82- Wild Life by Molly Gloss.  A Northwest writer writing a feminist novel about a woman at the turn of the 20th century in Washington.  This is one of those books that crosses many genres.

83- Elements of Style by Strunk and White.  I should have read this tiny volume years ago, it definitely is a great little book despite being 80 years old.  I will be teaching from this next semester.