This Comic Is Good – The Originals
Really, Dave Gibbons may be one of the more underappreciated comic creators out there.
Talk to any big name writer out there, and they’ll gush over how great he is, not only as an artist, but as a storyteller.
And yet, he is still mainly known just as “The guy who drew Watchmen.”
That is a shame, because he is conistently one of the best writers (forget his awesome art) in comics today.
The Originals is about two friends, Lel and Bok, who strive to become a member of the coolest gang out there, The Originals.
Gibbons set out to tell an autobiographical story of his youth, not necessarily his own specific experiences, but rather, the feeling of the time. However, since it is the FEEL that he most wants, not any specific occurances, he just transplanted the whole era into the future. Vespa scooters become Hover scooters, stuff like that.
One of the comments on the book, from Garth Ennis, I believe, makes reference to just how effortless Gibbons makes the comic-creating process look, and it is true.
The panels, the dialogue, it all flows together seamlessly.
As you may know, Gibbons’ art is really good, and it is in full display in this comic…and Gibbons freely embraces the black and white medium…especially in the use of black panel separators.
There is no grand story being told here, really, just Lel’s rise (and perhaps fall) with the Originals, so if you are looking for an epic, you will be dissapointed.
In addition, I will admit, it is a bit pricey for a comic that weighes in at less than half the size, page-wise, of Watchmen…so perhaps you would be better off waiting until it gets reprinted in a cheaper, paperback version.
But that would require waiting to read it.
I tried to wait (the book first came out in October of 2004), but I just could not…and I do not regret the decision at all.