Monday, May 30, 2005

Best Memorial Day Comics

I think today would be as fine a day as any to examine which comics over the past 15 years have been the best treatments of soldiers from America's wars in comics.

1. Garth Ennis' War Stories. These are, to me, just about the epitome of the war genre nowadays, as Ennis has such deep-seated respect for armed forces. The detail and reverance he gives the characters in these stories, while still willing to give a realistic (not unfairly fawning) depiction of their environment and is just quite impressive.

To be fair, #2-4 could also be Ennis, as he just is a master of the War format (with titles like Enemy Ace, Hitman (the war issues), Unknown Soldier, Punisher: Born, even the Adventures of the Rifle Brigade).

So let me go to #5.

5. Brian Azzarello and Joe Kubert's Sergeant Rock graphic novel. Azzarello is one of those writers who just doesn't seem right unless he is writing in a grittier format, and the war story format is perfect for him. And Joe Kubert? We should thank our lucky stars every day that Joe Kubert is still drawing comic books.

6. Will Eisner's Last Day in Vietnam is a great, personal look at the lives of soldiers in Vietnam. His use of sepia worked really well in the comic. A very enjoyable comic.

7. The Nam. Especially the Michael Golden issues. He is just amazing. I will admit that the Nam, like any comic with rotating creative teams, had some bad issues (and their Punisher tie-in was soooo tacky)...but there were also some strong, strong issues in there.

Man....that's all I can think of.

I know I must be missing out on other good works about soldiers since 1990....perhaps some of you attentive readers could help me out.


Blogger Lex said...

That Sgt. Rock original graphic novel is one of my all-time favorite stories. It was realistic, dramatic and fun.

I'd give an honorable mention to the scene at the beginning of DC: New Frontier #1 with the Losers. I wasn't strictly about the war, but it did deal with soldiers... plus, it was an awesome little vinette.

5/31/2005 01:27:00 AM  
Blogger Michael said...

Ennis' Vietnam issues of Preacher (18 and 50, I believe) were also quite good. Any issue of "Our Army At War" with Joe Kubert attached, as well.

5/31/2005 08:24:00 AM  
Blogger layne said...

Larry Hama's Nth Man(1989-1990) just barely squeaks in; despite the ninjas & mutants, the military aspect is probably the best part.

5/31/2005 08:33:00 AM  

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