Lately I’ve been back into comic books.
It started about a year or so ago while looking for graphic novels at the library. I ran across The Ultimates which I liked very much. The art is wonderful (so much better than what I remember from being a kid) and the stories are, well, more adult.
Everyone is re-imagined (I hate that word, but it fits here) in interesting ways. Giant Man and Wasp have some serious domestic issues, Thor is a seemingly crazy eco-hippie, the Hulk is maleness magnified a hundred fold… Neat stuff.
It got me into the whole Ultimate imprint of Marvel comics. I usually wait for the hardcover collections to come out, and I follow Ultimate Spider-Man, Ultimate Fantastic Four and The Ultimates.
While the art and stories are generally more interesting and geared toward adults (OK, man-children), also interesting is how the ads have changed.
Gone are the X-ray specs and sea monkeys. Video games and movies remain, but there’s an awful lot of car ads. And a recent ad with a woman sensuously licking an ice cream cone for Old Spice (yes, Old Spice!) strikes me as very adult.
And it’s all cool. I like reading them, and it’s nice to see the medium matured. But it’s harder and harder to find a comic for my son that I feel comfortable with him reading.
He’s three and loves loves LOVES superheroes. Captain American especially.
I’ve tried the supposed all-ages comics, but there’s an awful lot of violence in them, and he has plenty of time to be desensitized to that by TV down the road.
With the kids-related toy lines, and the Marvel babies yet to come, you’d think there’d be friendlier stuff for a kid his age.
Anyway, it’s cool to be somewhat back into comics again. And I’m looking forward to sharing them more with my son down the road.
What a long way they’ve come.