Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Sunday, June 14, 2009
This is the comic book version of saying "Dude! I wanna fight ya!"
Saturday, February 25, 2006
The Eighties are the greatest Period in Comic-Book-Creation (and I do mean period!)
In today's Episode I will discuss Arthur Adams. For a long time, I believed that Arthur Adams was an amalgamation of british Scifi-Writer Douglas Adams and his creation Arthur Dent (whatever happened to Douglas Dent?) - just kidding, checking whether you're still with me.
Arhtur Adams' art has the dynamics of John Byrne and the details of George Perez, but there was something else in his lines... yes, something crazy, but in a nice kind of way.
This extraordinary (and notably slow) penciller blasted onto the comic scene with the 6 issue limited series "Longshot". I remember buying the last issue (double-size) at a used books market in Vienna. Adams' artwork was amazing. The details! The action! The weird grimasses! I don't think I actually read the story until much later (being the last issue, it just did not make sense to my feable little mind) - I only tried to absorb the pictures. But there was simply too much to absorb. Adams' art has the dynamics of John Byrne and the details of George Perez, but there was something else in his lines... yes, something crazy, but in a nice kind of way. If you know what I mean...
My next encounter with Adams' Artwork was in the "X-Men" Annual #10, another Longshot-story featuring Mojo the villain from the Mini-series pitted against the X-Men. At the time this was my single most favorite comic book. In addition to the amazing artwork of Arthur Adams I actually understood what the hell the story was about. On top of it all the climax featured the absolutely best picture of Wolverine ever and since!
A short recap of the story: While the X-Men are working out in the danger room trying to kick Magnetos butt (he was a good guy then - don't ask how or why), Longshot falls from a teleportal in the ceiling, covering everyone with magical foam (pretty gross!). On the next day - after having taken good care of their new arrival - it turns out the X-Men are devolving in age. Apparently the magic foam had properties that made our heroes younger. It only takes a few pages for them to be reduced to baby-age. Then they are in the power of Mojo the entertainment tycoon from another dimension who invented reality-TV before the term was first coined.
After a lot of soul searching the junior-team of the school the ever annoying New Mutants decide to don new costumes, call themselves the New X-Men and charge in for the rescue. They teleport int Mojos Dimension and have to fight their elder friends. You see the reason for the devolving of the X-Men was, so that Mojo could re-age them in his image. He brain washed them. This is best illustrated by their really risqué costumes.
Storm's costume is pink! With a mini-ballerina-skirt!
Wolverine is actually naked! Except for his extreme body hair-growth! And the fishbowl over his head!
And what the hell happened to Magneto! He's running around in a Nazi-uniform with a german army helmet on! Wasn't it kinda established, that he's jewish? Isn't that kinda tasteless making him a f--king Nazi? Okay, they were trying to illustrate the drastic change through Mojos brainwashing, but that went too far!
The battle commences! So of course the X-Men are on the brink handing the New Mutants their collective asses. At the turning point of the battle, Wolverine turns berserk and attacks one of the more fragile members of the younger non-brainwashed team called Karma. Just as he is on the brink of putting the kibbosh on her, something snaps. Apparently beating up on a chick goes against all of his instincts so Wolverine turns the wall around Karma into shreds but... leaves her unscathed. This releases him from Mojo's hold. In one dramatic panel Wolverine tears apart the fishbowl on his head and yells Mojo's name.
This was a classic F--k Yeah!-moment. When my gaze fell upon this Arthur Adams-rendered panel with Wolverine freaking out, a shiver crept up my spine and nested itself into the back of my brain threating to turn me into a bibbering vegetable. This was coolness incarnate. Arthur Adams you have shown me, what it means to be alive!
So to make a short story long: The X-Men all turn back into their old selves and they join forces with the New Muties to defeat Mojo and his evil six-armed lackey Spiral. Unbeknownst to out heroes Mojo is filming every second of the battle and using the footage to entertain his viewers! This sure beats "Big Brother"!
Nonetheless: The X-Men and their buddies return home and reflect upon the lesson learned in this battle (I totally forgot, what that stupid lesson was and I definitely will not get up out of bed to check up on this!).
X-Men Annual # 10 - Total Arthur Adams bliss. Featuring script by Chris Claremont and inks by Terry Austin (the best inker on this and any other planet!).
(Also available in the tradepaperback "Marvel Legends: Arthur Adams X-Men". Don't be fooled by the "X-Men" in the title, one third of the book is about the "Fantastic Four").
As an aside:
Many hold Arthur Adams responsible for being an "inspiration" to Rob Liefeld (aka "the-man-who-thought-he-could-draw-but-couldn't") and many of the other Image-"artist" (for want of a better term). This may be true to a certain extent, but couldn't those Adams-wannabes at least get some their swipes of Adams' right!?!