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.
I also recently followed the whole Civil War thingy (disappointing though it was), and I’m buying the nine issue series, Ultimate Power. It’s hard to ignore when Sue Storm looks like this:
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.
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