The third of our four part series of ‘Sam plays catch up on all her graphic novel review obligations’ sees a random hodge podge of books including the graphic novel version of Darren Aronofsky’s Noah, a gritty adaptation of the Green Hornet, and an album tie-in comic for the band Stone Sour. Other than the Green Hornet book these were a little hit or miss for me but definitely worth checking out if you’v got the inclination.
Noah: The Graphic Novel
Author: Darren Aronofsky
Illustrators: Ari Handel and Niko Henrichon
Release Date: March 19, 2014
Publisher: Image Comics
Source: NetGalley DRC
Genre(s): Biblical, Fantasy, potentially Post-Apocalyptic
Full disclosure: I have not seen the Noah movie.
I’m not sure if I ever will. Because this comic was actually pretty cool and I really enjoyed it. I mean, it wasn’t perfect. But it was enjoyable. Mostly, though, it was gorgeous. Absolutely gorgeous. It was something of a hybrid science fiction and fantasy mash up with a slight, subtle hint of an almost steampunk/technological past and I thought it was great. The best part, though, were the constant and beautiful depictions of an alien sky. There were dozens of foreign stars and planets in the sky at all times and it was absolutely stunning.
The story itself wasn’t bad. It was a nice adaptation of the classic Noah story. I wasn’t entirely sure if it was supposed to be the actual story or not and as I went along it didn’t really make a whole lot of sense even still. I guess it was supposed to be just an adaptation. (The rock-angel-monster-giant things weren’t in the Bible, were they?)
I liked the artwork a lot but I don’t have much to say about the story itself. Noah was kind of a dick and the incest that’s always implied in the Bible and biblical stories kind of freaks me out. So I wasn’t really that invested in anything beyond how gorgeous the covers and landscapes were but yeah. Those alone are worth checking out.
The Green Hornet Vol. 1
This was a fantastic book.
I’m not usually that big of a fan of old school comics like this. It’s a personal fault and I accept it. The old Green Hornet series just never really appealed to me. I think it was too much of a classic pulp style – it’s cut and dry, black and white, and more or less a bit boring. But Mark Waid’s Green Hornet really tuned the whole franchise around and hooked me more or less from the beginning.
The bad guy in this book isn’t really the only bad guy. There’s someone out there running around placing bombs around the city, sure, but the real antagonist is just as easily the Green Hornet himself. He makes ‘tough’ decisions that ultimately place his whole being into question. Even Kato, his faithful right hand man, can’t deal with him. Egotistical and misguided, the Britt Reid we see in this book is no saint. He’s a very flawed, complex character and it’s a great way to look at the character. Too often our heroes are infallible. Waid gives us something more.
It makes for a great read and an engaging story.
Granted, the Green Hornet still isn’t my favorite character out there and I’m not sure I’d be all that interested in keeping on with the story. But for a one volume exercise, I enjoyed it.
House of Gold & Bones
Sometimes there are just books that you feel like maybe you missed out on appreciating because you just didn’t get where they were going from. For me, this is one of those books. I thought it looked cool. I mean, look at that cover. It’s super intense. I did not, however, realize that it was by a guy from the Stone Sour and Slipknot bands or that the story was sort of a parallel to two albums that were released by Stone Sour.
All I know about either of these bands is that all my edgy friends in elementary school thought Slipknot was the coolest thing ever.
So, I’m really not the target audience for this one.
Granted, I think there’s a lot of potential for fans of the music. It’s a short book at only like 100 some odd pages and the story seems a bit short and rushed. The story is about a human character lost in a nightmare fueled world with no escape. It’s a surreal world, constantly changing. Grotesquely beautiful, the artwork is really captivating. However, we can’t really attribute that to the band or the author. Over all, there was a lot of potential in the story – it took on a sort of Sandman style – but in practice it fell a bit short for the average reader. If this is what you’re looking for skip House of Gold and Bones and pick up Sandman or Hellblazer.
It does have an intense book trailer, though. I’ll give it that.
Any Stone Sour (is that even the band name?) fans want to chew me out in the comments?
Go for it.