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31 Days of Comics – Comic That Deserves a Soundtrack

Our pal Seth Hahne, of GoodOKBad fame, came up with this 31 Days of Comics challenge, one of those things where each day of the month you’re given a different category that you then make a choice of a comic to fill that category. I figured it would be a fun bit to do, so here we are! Click here to see each of the categories so far!

We continue with Day 18, which is a Comic That Deserves a Soundtrack.

Read on for my pick and then you can share yours!

This is a bit of a tough category (and I like that even Seth admitted as much). My #1 guess would be the Scott Pilgrim books, but since they had a movie with an actual soundtrack that seems like a bit of a cheat.

So I will go with Cyril Pedrosa’s graphic novel, Three Shadows.

This story, translated from the French by First Second Books, tells the tale of a young married couple named Louis and Lise and their son Joachim. They live on a farm in the countryside and everything is just nice and fun and simple until, well, one day things changed…for the worse.

Let’s see how Pedrosa handles the reveal (brilliantly, I might add)…

How spooky is that? Pedrosa really nails that scene beautifully.

Now couldn’t you imagine those sequences really doing well with a great soundtrack? The happy times would be highlighted even more and the ominous reveal of the shadows would be even more striking.

In any event, the three shadows are here for Joachim. Effectively, his life is over. But if you’re his parents, how can you accept something so absurd as “oh, okay, three shadows are here to end our son’s life, oh well, what are you going to do?”

That’s what this book is really about – showing how Louis and Lise are driven to extremes (particularly Louis) in protecting their son. And in the process of protecting him, are they losing each other?

This is a powerful work with striking, dynamic artwork. And again, I could imagine the use of music really elevating the experience. Sort of like The Night of the Hunter, that classic Robert Mitchum film, which used music so well to elevate the experience of dread.


100 Bullets

A bit of Fun Lovin’ Criminals, some Funk, Hip Hop and generally some songs you’d expect to see in a Quentin Tarantino film.

Daredevil’s “Born Again,” “The Man Without Fear” and “The Elektra Saga” could really use some dated early-00s nu-metal.

100 Bullets

A bit of Fun Lovin’ Criminals, some Funk, Hip Hop and generally some songs you’d expect to see in a Quentin Tarantino film.

Good choice. Azzarello and Risso’s Jonny Double would also work really well with that type of soundtrack.

Preacher – Until The End of The World

U2 – Unitil The End of The World

“In my dreams, I was drowning my sorrows…but my sorrows they learned to swim”

It just fits so perfectly.

I’m thinking the Umbrella Academy both because it’s got a nice rhythm to it and because of its obvious Wes Andesron inluence.

The most recent Young Avengers run. In fact I want to procure all the music mentioned in it and reread it while playing those songs.

Any comic about a band- Gipi’s Garage Band, The Amazing Joy Buzzards, etc.- should have a soundtrack featuring original music “by the band.”

Steve Gerber’s worker a lot of Beatles references into his comics. I could see “Nowhere Man” being used in the Winky Man story, “Lucy in the Sky…” For that issue of Man Thing with the candles, etc.

You could score Lone Wolf & Cub to Wu Tang Clan, some of which samples the original Lone Wolf & Cub soundtrack.

Strangers in Paradise is destined to have a soundtrack

Hip Hop Family Tree not only deserves a soundtrack, but the online version actually has one. Oh, the power of the Internet!

When I first became obsessed with the Lee/Ditko Dr. Strange Destiny Saga, my sister was becoming obsessed with Elvis Costello’s This Year’s Model. She played it again and again as I poured over the story. Ever since then, I can hear that album whenever I read it. It’s a sort of involuntary soundtrack.

I always thought that Kingdom Come needed a soundtrack. In fact, back when it came out, I found a copy of the soundtrack for the original Transformers animated movie and found that a lot of it fit Kingdom Come’s fight scenes. Maybe not the Weird Al song, but a lot of the other stuff did.

How about era appropriate David Bowie for Charles Burns’ “Black Hole”, a tale of a sexually transmitted disease that causes grotesque physical mutations in teenagers in mid 70’s Seattle.

I always thought if they ever made a Runaways movie, either a new version or the original of Slade’s Run Runaway would be a great song. Along with Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, of course.

my picks. besides daredevil born again done to some heavy metal or even ozzy osborn singing during the kingpin finding out that daredevil is still alive. plus also always though the sandman would be worthy of a sound track like a mixture of some bethoven and some sad errie songs.

Young Liars. It’s twisty and frenetic and author/artist David Lapham even starts even chapter with a mix tape soundtrack suggestion.

I know that some people specify a soundtrack to be a collection of pop songs or whatever, but I’m going to call it as any musical accompaniment.

For our selection today, I’m going to go with Jiro Taniguchi’s The Walking Man. I considered Children of the Sea but in the end, well, who knows why we choose the things we choose. The Walking Man is a contemplative, humanistic work, but is never heady or elite. I think the book would play nice with something reminiscent of Amelie soundscape, only slightly less jaunty. And perhaps minus the accordions. I’d pin Ennio Morricone as the best composer for the task and want him to draw up something in the vein of what he did for Cinema Paradiso, only maybe without the sweeping love them (as much as I like it). Whatever the case, the soundtrack would need to be light and friendly without coming anywhere close to silly. Maybe add a touch of gravitas, but just a touch.

Another option would be to score it something like the main theme for Won Kar-Wai’s In the Mood for Love. The bouncing solemnity there would give the book an entirely different feel and, I think, underscores the profound effect on our experience of a story its music has.

By the way, Brian. I’m so glad you featured Three Shadows. It’s a great choice for a masterful book that could benefit from a soundtrack.

Congress of the Animals, also taking soundtrack to mean musical accompaniment. A collection of pop songs with Frank would be LOL.

Phonogram, obviously.

I could go the obvious route with Young Liars (well, obvious if more people have read it), which had two song recommendations in each issue (in the title). You know what, I think I will go that route. Just play the songs while you are reading. They go together really nice for a great series that died before its time.

Oh, and Mesmo Delivery goes perfect with some psychobilly. Probably just a song or two since it is such a quick read.

And a big orchestral score for “A Tale of Sand”.

I want to add to dancj and say that along with the suggested hip hop and funk, it should also include jazz, lounge and a lot of the great American genres. It should be a real mosiac of American music. I always thought that if it was a TV show that the opening song should be either be:

A) Everybody Knows – Leonard Cohen
B) A hip hop song (I don’t know which one, it is a genre that is a bit of blind spot for me)
C) Sway – Dean Martin

Strangers in Paradise is destined to have a soundtrack

Belle and Sebastian?

Oh and of course I picture Scott Pilgrim with loads of Anti-folk (Kimya Dawson, Antsy Pants, Jeffrey Lewis etc) but I think that’s largely because that made up most of the soundtrack to Juno which also had Michael Cera.

Guy DeLisle’s travelogue comics (Pyongyang, Burma, Shezhen etc) would be neat to read with a soundtrack – composed partly of music from the counrtry he’s in, and partly of music from DeLisle’s own Canada, to accentuate the contrasts.

Garth Ennis’ run on THE DEMON needs a Metal soundtrack that inculdes music from Ozzie, Metallica, Megadeth, and, of course, Iron Maiden.

Well, Paul Cornell’s been known to suggest soundtracks in captions for his books (The Kate Bush issue of Dark X-Men and the Welsh mixtape for Wisdom MAX #3 are both wonderful, especially if you follow the story cues for when to cut to the next track in Wisdom.), Ennis’s Hellblazer and Preacher are best read with a Pogues box set on shuffle, but I’ve got to go with Velvet Underground & Nico and White Light White Heat for Shade the Changing Man. Ditko AND Milligan.

The Pogues for Hellblazer fits – and maybe a bit here and there for Preacher, but really Preacher wants some Johnny Cash, maybe a bit of Dan Sartain. Anything with a bit of a cowboy feel to it.

White Light White Heat fits Shade well.

I often listen to the soundtrack to the movie while reading “Scott Pilgrim”, but I’ve also started throwing in music from Bryan Lee O’Malley’s musical project “Kupek”. It works really well, and all their albums are free.

Oh, man…..Gotta be “Farewell Moonshadow”. Grand, sweeping and yet so intimate……Also file this one on the “Comic That Makes You Cry” page…..

Ultimates 2: Grand Theft America is basically an action movie, so it deserves a soundtrack.

I’d like every issue of X-Men to play the 90’s cartoon intro before I open the cover.

Scott Pilgrim’s kinda obvious, but now it really does have a soundtrack.

I would totally love a Casanova anime with songs by Yoko Kanno. Think of the possibilities! She could mix the songs Fraction stuffs into the narrative with her crazy fusion mumbo jumbo! I’m getting stoked the more I think about it!

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