Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Project: WarHawk

Project: WarHawk - Dan Thompson

Before I get into the review proper I wanted to go over a few things that happened in the real world.
Barry 'savior' Obama is the President now and his inaugural speech was even more boring than expected. It was disjointed, there was no real 'theme' that I could discern and it was full of the same empty platitudes that won the election for him.
If you're already full of 'hope' and 'change' then you probably loved it but I was hoping for something meatier.
Meanwhile the stock market suffered it's biggest inauguration day loss in history. Probably not Obama's fault.

In other news, my Sister in law gave birth to a little girl tonight. Six pounds, eight ounces of ooey gooey birthy goodness. Haven't seen her yet, probably won't until tomorrow perhaps, but she's there.
My second niece.
There's a third on the way, not official until they get an ultrasound that shows the sex but the heart-rate was very high and that's supposed to be a pretty sure sign that it's a girl baking in the oven.
So it'll be three nieces then, no kids for me and no boys of any sort.

So the news is getting progressively better then and here's the best news of all: (for those of you out there on the internets at least)
Dan Thompson is back!

This is a very solid entry again and I'm trying to take solace in the chart position by consoling myself with the fact that Mr. Thompson has become a member of the exclusive 'repeat competitor' club.
What does this mean to me?
It means Dan Thompson is serious about his comics. He's not going to fade into the darkness like some of the other also-rans.

But what about the comic?
Love the art, the storytelling. Look at the moon in the last panel of the submission. It looks like Pac-man! I couldn't do that, I'm too tightly wound. It's mystical to me when I see an artist who is willing to reduce a form to a symbol and make it work, and it does work. Clarity is not compromised.
The way the scenes are paced makes for an easy and enjoyable read. Another skill of Dan's that I admire.

Now I admit that the style he uses and the pacing itself may be a little bit off-putting to a certain type of reader. I think most would agree that modern comics tend more toward decompression and the layperson is certainly going to make a 'Dick Tracy' comparison when he or she sees the way the faces are drawn.
That might be hurting him in the standings but I wouldn't want him to change a thing.
As far as the story goes, it is what it is. It suits him.
I don't know if there's depth hidden in there but it sure says a hell of a lot in Dan's favor that I'm asking this question. Usually I'm left wondering what the plot is, but this time I'm a whole second level ahead of the typical entry in terms of understanding what's going on.
In all honesty I don't think I'm asking too much to expect EVERY entry be this fully realized but lowered expectations will do this to me.

Four out of five stars.


Metsuke said...

@ Zuda: What McCloud lesson are you referring to as per the synopsis, (honest question)? Dan just seems to produce, produce, produce and find, hopefully, a niche' through exposure, cuz he ain't networking at all. I imagine Dan in a constant state of pronouncing his art well done...and moving on to the next.

Anonymous said...

Obama will destroy you!

RKB said...

there's always a counter revolution, to the revolution isn't their? I'm sick of decompression, just because you can do something doesn't mean you should, and for sure not in a 8 screen contest. I don't know if you were ever a fan of the image guys, or the new wave if you want to call them that Ill, but I used to be. The older i get the more i like self contained stories, or at least ones that don't wander about in their narrative. The older i get the more i like classic comic art, or art that looks old school, like with this comic. It helps i kind of enjoy the genre of war comics so this story grabs me more than Reno. It got 4/5 stars and a fav from me. Fine stuff really.

mpd57 said...

Is this a review we can believe in? Yes it IS!

Dan said...

Hey, that was awesome! Thank you very much!

Paul said...

Everyone loves Dan except for the guys who love someone else. :(

In time the cream will rise to the top.

@ metsuke - if i had the book out I'd give you a page number but it was in making comics, it was where mccloud was discussing different ways you could tell a story and one of them was depicting just the guys hands as his life progressed.
he was a happy boy, he got married, he went to war, he died.

Something like that.