July 2005 Archives

Loosely stitched parts

I bought the first three issues of Doc Frankenstein, and having read them, I've decided not to continue reading the series.

I was attracted to Doc Frankenstein by the Wachowski Brothers, who are billed as the writers, as well as by the Frankenstein concept. Lots of people feel a special attraction to Dracula or vampires in general; I have that some feeling towards the Frankenstein story and its variations.

The story is illustrated with many beautiful panoramic scenes, such as the one I've reproduced here. The panels show great attention to detail, especially in the depiction of machinary. There are several two-page spreads in the series with imaginative viewpoints that certainly make a strong impression. What the drawings don't seem to do, however, is tell a story. Which might be okay, if only the script did a better job of moving the story forward.

Frankenstein brings down a Japanese-style monster

I was intrigued by the brief few pages where Doc Frankenstein appeared as a lawmen in the Western United States. But before the idea could take off, the story had already moved to another time period and another set of interesting but poorly developed ideas.

Although I'm not by any stretch a defender of organized religion, the anti-religious venom of the series is so over the top as to appear farcical, which I doubt was the author's real intent. I found myself giggling uneasily through issue #2, the way one does when a movie attempting to be serious comes off badly.

Perhaps film would be a more forgiving medium for Doc Frankenstein; an actor's forceful personality might be able to carry the weak story. I actually lost track of the plot thread for several pages at one point, unable to piece together transitions or narrative sequence from the visually-engaging but mute panels on the page.

The nice thing about a series is it gives you time to clean up your act. I like most of what the Wachowski Brothers have done, so I'll probably check back with Doc Frankenstein a year from now and see if it's improved.

He could have danced all night

My eyes bugged out the other day while reading an interview with game designer Cliff Bleszinski in Electronic Gaming Monthly. The designer was talking about his intent in creating the forthcoming XBOX 360 game, Gears of War:

'You have these two guys that are engaging in this dance of death where it's almost like the prom date where the room melts away and it's just the two them focusing on each other,' says Bleszinski. 'Except instead of trying to have a nice moment of romance, they're trying to kill each other.'

Ugh. I had thought this death-obsessed homosocial thematic had been tapped out years ago, by Hemingway (pick a novel) and Norman Mailer ("The Homosexual Villain"), and all that crowd. Maybe this guy should make Women in Love into a video game; I'm sure the naked wrestling scene would translate very well.

All this fucked-up homosexual bogeyman stuff is coming back these days. Everything hatefully old is Bushy and new again.

Recent Comments

  • Joe G.: I wonder if one option for e-books is to create read more
  • thecutelittleredheadedgrrlfriend: Well, I am blind as a bat, so it is read more
  • thecutelittleredheadedgrrlfriend: This is an excellent post. It was like reading a read more
  • Joe G.: Why you're not reviewing films, comic books, and literature and read more
  • thecutelittleredheadedgrrlfriend: I imagine if they did exist, it was during the read more
  • Teresa: Hi Rose, Thanks for the comment! Interesting to hear you read more
  • Rose: Thank you for an intelligent article. I, too, took Jodie read more
  • thecutelittleredheadedgrrlfriend: I thought what you had to say was brilliant. I read more
  • Teresa: Hi Fran, She did not use the word lesbian, which read more
  • frankie: Hi T- I listened to her speech, and I wonder read more