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Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Millar's Nemesis

CIVIL WAR? Nothing. KICK-ASS? A warmup. What if the smartest, toughest costumed bad ass in the world was totally evil? Meet Nemesis. He’s systematically been destroying the lives of every police chief in Asia, and he’s now set his sights on Washington, DC. Between you and me, the police don’t have a chance. Do not miss the book that EVERYONE will be talking about!
  • ISBN: 9780857681072
  • Dimensions: 258 x 170 mm
  • Hardback: 112pp
  • Publication date: 9 February 2011
  • Illustration detail: Colour comic strip
  • All authors: Mark Millar & Steve McNiven
  • £14.99
Hmm. Well, there are those who quite literally think of Millar as a god.  They’ll buy whatever he writes. I liked the original Ultimates that he wrote and a few other early projects and I even purchased issues 1 and 2 of Kick-Ass and then said “no more”.

Really, what does it say when the jacket flap contains the dictionary definition of the word “nemesis”?  Is this being written for dummies who say out loud; “Duh, ‘eck, whut durr that thurr word mean?”  It’s been used by others and it just looks plain insulting to readers:  “Hey, dummies: “Ne-me-sis” is a real word.  This is what it means…”

Millar is amongst the new generation of British creators who work in comics who seem to be proud of introducing obscenities such as “The C word” as someone once described it to me.  It’s puerile.  Please do not scream out “It’s realistic writing you ***** *****!” Because it is not.  It is over the top, ridiculous violence featuring men in costume.

If a writer has to resort to expletives because that is what their audience expects because they see it in the cinema then they’ve lost track.  It’s not entertaining.  Great artwork but I think it is summed up in the first few pages.  A character is tied up on a rail track.  he starts blurting out his obscenities and then huge blood spatter.  Nemesis hanger-on:

“Hilarious! I love it when their last words get interrupted.”

Millar readers would not watch “snuff movies” because they don’t “ring true” -where’s the screaming obscenities? The huge explosion of blood? “Just not realistic, man.”

It leaves me cold.  The thing is that Millar CAN be a good writer but it’s almost as though no one wants to editorially put the brakes on him.  Alan Moore, who can write great stories without resulting to obscenities, once said he’d wished some editor had said: “No, Alan. I don’t think so. We’ll leave that out.”
Its just so derivative.

It just leaves me cold. If only Titan had sent another book!  I just don’t buy into this Millar cult following and I hope that at some point he decides to re-think what he is writing.  That written, when it’s making him a lot of money why would I think he gives a damn what I write.

Its a quality printed book and I’m sure Miller fans will love it.  McNiven draws what is written and though the art is good the over the top Manga/anime blood explosions just look ridiculous -don’t start with the “What do you know?” rot.

Please, Titan, send me something other than Millar (Though I doubt they’ll send anything else now!).

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