Daily Archives: March 16, 2008

Mind the Currency Gap

It finally happened. Last week, DC Comics announced it would revise the pricing of its comics to better reflect the value of the Canadian dollar as compared to its weakening U.S. counterpart. The publisher is just, oh, six or seven months behind currency markets and its biggest competitor, Marvel Comics. Of course, Marvel’s current Canadian price is a shade higher than the American cover price, even though the dollar here in the Great White North is stronger than the Yankee Greenback. (This is an issue Eye on Comics has explored in the past. You can find previous articles on the subject here and here.)

So DC’s announcement, though incredibly late, is welcome news for retailers and customers, yes? Well, not really.

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Quick Critiques – March 16, 2008

The Lone Ranger & Tonto #1 (Dynamite Entertainment)
by Brett Matthews, John Abrams & Mario Guevara

You know what? I have no idea if this is Dynamite’s second Lone Ranger title, a newly titled relaunch to replace the other book or a one-shot. I wasn’t able to find any information in this comic itself or on the publisher’s website. I hope it’s one of the two former options, because this stands out as the best Lone Ranger comic Dynamite has produced thus far. I attribute my appreciation of the book mainly to my appreciation of the artwork by Mario Guevara. His name isn’t familiar to me, but I’ll be looking for it in the future. His detailed, gritty and sometimes extreme style looks something like an amalgam of the styles of such artists as Joe Kubert, Barry Windsor-Smith and Ladronn.  His linework, along with the colors, really drives home the arid nature of the Wild West landscape. The story doesn’t seem to merit the extra page count (and accompanying price hike), so that might be a bit of a sticker for some. I think my favorite part of Matthews and Abrams’s story is the strong sense of community one gets from the title characters’ interaction with the kindly shopkeepers. I really enjoy the contrast of character between the Ranger and Tonto. The latter is something of a pragmatic adviser, and the former is driven by his idealism and compassion. Perhaps one reason the story worked so well for me is that I’ve seen examples of the kind of eye-for-an-eye attitude of the masses when faced with an unspeakable crime and the reality of mental illness, but the tragedy that drives this simple plot forward is a compelling one. 7/10

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