Today at the Comics Journal, we're basking in ongoing Sloane Leong content: this Friday, she's talking with Antonio Hitos, another one of the artists-in-residence at Maison de Auteurs. Rules and Peanuts--there's nothing I don't love about both of those subjects.
In the past couple of years, especially in the field I’m in which is part of a more rigid tradition, the comics are just storyboards for movies or they’re just pitches for a tv show.
Yeah, that’s a shame. I mean, comics can also be cool just because the story is interesting or the drawings are fun or whatever, they can work that way just fine. But it would be so much better if, on top of that, they were also exploring the possibilities that are inherent to their own language.
Exactly, yeah. I totally agree. What are some challenges that come up when you work in such a…I don’t want to say strict—
It is strict.
Today's review comes to us from Keith Silva, and its on Ascender #1, the latest comic from content machine Jeff Lemire. It's a negative review of the comic and Lemire in general.
Perhaps it’s too harsh to rest Ascender’s bankruptcy of ideas on only one of its storytellers when Lemire’s script shoulders as much (more?) of the burden. Lemire works his familiar familial theme into Ascender which his readers have come to expect and depend upon. Like legions of others, Lemire has made a prosperous living and professionally respectable career being a family guy. He’s never met a damaged ragamuffin or traumatized and (mostly) straight white male whom he hasn’t found a way to write into a family either by their own blood or manufacture. When not hammering home ‘the family,’ Lemire’s stories stick to the most popular literary themes: love, war, survival, coming-of-age, good vs. evil, etc. This isn’t to fault Lemire for writing stories that rely on popular literary themes, but to point out he’s more run-of-the-mill than exceptional. And yet he maintains steady employment, receives positive critical attention and is more prolific than many of his peers: there are a lot of middling comics on the shelves bearing the name Jeff Lemire.