Daily Archives: July 18, 2008

Flea Market Finds: Iron Man #134

Tony Stark has it all… good looks, billions of dollars, beautiful women fawning all over him, but hey, every guy’s got to grow up sometime and begin his search for a classy partner. Thanks to my recent acquisition of a small collection of tattered, yellowed comics from the 1970s and ’80s, I discovered one of Tony’s efforts to woo an elegant and intelligent woman.

Now one as to bear in that this particular courtship came at a difficult time in Tony’s life. He was just beginning to realize that booze might be something of an issue for him (blackouts, you see… time to ease off on the hooch, though not to cut it out entirely). His erratic behavior as Iron Man has also caught the attention of some longtime friends. Why, the Lions Club even cancelled Shellhead’s regular appearance at their New York conference! And you know when you lose the Lions, there’s just no way to save face.

In any case, a nice night on the town with a beautiful, engaging woman such as Bethany Cabe ought to address any bruised ego, right? So let’s see… where to take her? It’s New York, so the possibilities are endless. The Rainbow Room? Nah, too predictable. Famous Original Ray’s Pizza? Not fancy enough. Where to go, where to go…?

Oh, I know…

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Afraid of the Shark

Water Baby original graphic novel
Writer/Artist/Cover artist: Ross Campbell
Letters: Jared K. Fletcher
Editor: Shelly Bond
Publisher: DC Comics/Minx imprint
Price: $9.99 US/$11.99 CAN

The second wave of books from DC’s Minx line of graphic novels is proving to be an impressive one. While the novelty of the original wave of books aimed at female readers was enough to garner my attention, the strength and originality of the storytelling in such titles as Burnout, The New York Four and Water Baby are showing that the line has the potential to be sustainable and successful, at least from a creative standpoint. Ross Campbell’s contribution to the imprint is unlike any of the other books that have preceded it. There’s an edgier quality at play that allows the graphic novel and its heroine to stand apart. It’s not as easy to relate to Brody, Water Baby‘s protagonist, but Campbell’s writing and expressive artwork offer up a compelling character study. There are no clear answers or morals at play in this book, and the ending is disappointingly anticlimactic. But the characters and carefree spirit that dominates the book are so well crafted and conveyed that they help Water Baby to shine as one of the best graphic novels of the year so far.

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