Thursday, September 17, 2009

Who let the dogs out?

Face Front Ya Goldbrickin Yahoos!

(I always wanted to say that but don’t feel bad. I myself am a member of Nick Fury’s goldbrickin yahoo team of many years standing. Dues up to date!)

I had the good fortune to find a new title to read last night on my weekly junket to the hallowed halls of CBJ (I bet you didn’t know your halls were hallowed Socko!). As you know from the CBJ Webpage , creators par excellence , Evan Dorkin (bet you didn’t know you were the French word for excellent did you Evan?) and Jill Thompson were on hand to sign copies of their new Dark Horse book “Beasts of Burden”. This morning I had a chance to sit down with this book and give it a good read over a cup of fresh roasted coffee (bet you didn’t know you made fresh roasted coffee did you Dunkin…ok enough of THAT!). Anyway the short story is this book is GREAT. I loved it and was tempted to genuflect in the general direction of the team of Dorkin and Thompson. (That means put it on my pull list Waffle!)

Now you have to understand that I have been a fan of Evan’s work for more years than I would like to admit because it makes me only slightly younger than The Watcher. There is good reason for that. He never disappoints. And I am now officially a HUGE fan of Ms. Thompson’s artwork. All I can say is WOW about her work. But more on that in a bit.

It should also be noted that these are two exceptionally nice individuals which is the best superpower to have. If only Galactus had niceness he might actually lose a few pounds! (Think about hitting the gym there Gal !!…sheesh he really let himself go since FF #48!)
Now to the book. You all know that old chestnut about the dogs (plus cat) who are paranormal investigators…fight a colony being comprised of frogs that eat …well everything…defeat said Frog thingy and join the larger organization dedicated to fighting evil stuff of the weird variety?...yeah , I know, but these guys do it RIGHT! Just kidding…not about doing it right…but the old chestnut part. That is what pulled me in. the whole concept is just so fresh! This is a first issue so you get intros to the main characters, who all have distinct and delightful personalities and ways of speaking. The story is tight and self contained for a single issue. You come away feeling comfortable in this world. Sprinkle in a small nod to X-Files and another to Buffy in this very original world, add a dash of that tight Dorkin dialogue and you have a great read.

I don’t want to spoil it for you by giving away too many details but TRUST me, you are going to love it!

As to the renderings, by Ms. Thompson , just beautiful. Each panel looks as if it has been painted and the animals are not anthropomorphized in the Disney fashion. They look and move like real dogs and cats. They show facial emotions like real dogs and cats which takes enormous subtlety to render. Being a dog owner and lover I can tell you that dogs have very expressive faces. Just not human faces. Jill captures that flawlessly. You can see that Jill is a lover of animals as well as a wonderful illustrator. She treats them with great dignity, humor and genuine affection.

I know that Beasts of Burden will be on my must read list. But don’t just take my word for it. My dog Scully the Chocolate Lab and connoisseur of great literature gave this book four paws WAY up!

So whattaya waitin for ya goldbrickin yahoos?

Get to CBJ and buy it!!! (there will be a quiz down the road!)

Next – Why bringing back Steve Rogers is a GOOD thing!

That’s 30!


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