Saturday, 16 January 2010


Book of Eli - one of the failings of Fallout 3 was a lack of video sequences to tie together the main plot and stop the eventual resolution feeling like a bit of an anticlimax, but there's probably enough similarities between that and this to imagine what it might have been like if one of my favorite time sinks had a better bookend than a Ron Perlman voiceover. The visual trappings of Eli are quite dour and the theological subtext might trouble some of your more argumentative liberals, though the idea of thousands of years of Christianity reduced to just another bunch of words on a shelf might offset that on an intellectual level. The rest of the film, while competent, falls short in terms of entertainment and - oddly - artistic merit compared to other post-apocalyptic offerings of more humble means, though the one film that kept coming to mind was Patrick Swayze's Steel Dawn, possibly because of the western influence on the story, setting and main character - but it's an unfavorable comparison given that the Swayze-starrer had brevity and a lightness of touch to proceedings born of the low budget and embarrassing 1980s vision of post-apocalyptia, while Eli is sombre, overlong, and has an ending that's a bit like the end of an episode of Smallville in that it just won't finish. It's a journeyman adventure, and all things considered I've had more enjoyment from watching horrible no-budget DVD travesties like She-Wolves of the Wasteland or America 3000 by dint of not having high expectations to meet. For definitive wasteland fiction, A Boy and His Dog or Damnation Alley probably remain a better bet.


Wolverine: Origins #43
- More of the usual murderous fun from Marvel's biggest draw with small children as he has a slow day and only disembowels one person for a whole book. I'm sure he'll be back at his all-ages best next month, but in the meantime, it's great to see 1980s staples Cloak and Dagger doing something other than filling space on team books written by someone with more of an eye on the comics internet and what it's talking about than a plan what to actually do with old-school favorites once they're jammed into a glorified cameo, which is pretty much all C&D have been doing since their stint on Marvel Knights ended about ten years ago, particularly in Runaways, where they did little more than jobbing to get newer characters over with that title's fast-shrinking monthly readership. Here, Dagger is admittedly little more than a joke, reduced to a damsel in distress/"chicks don't understand a man's pain" role, but it's at least a meaty role with some sort of emotional substance and palpable sense of danger to it, and the 20-something Cloak and Dagger don't spend all their time banging on about 'the good old days' of comics from the writer's youth, which is a comic book trope of which I am thoroughly sick to the back teeth.
The Boys #38 - I get two impressions from this comic. 1 - that Garth Ennis is writing about non-whites again and you either have an opinion about that by now or you don't, and 2 - that he's seen Aliens more than once. Ennis is always readable, of course, but The Female didn't really need an origin and that's what this issue is.


Nothing at all - it's saturday, bugger off!

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