Archive for May, 2010

Hooded Polyp: Rampant Formalism

I tend to be a careless reader on first reading a book. I’m distracted. I’m too interested in just getting through. I’m testing the waters too much: do I like this, will I like this? For this reason, I’m a big rereader. I try not to review anything on only one read. Better with two […]

continue reading »

 
 

Hooded Polyp — Stupid Spaces

Asterios Polyp takes an impeccable sense of visual design and layer upon layer of sophisticated allusion to tell a clichéd, tedious, poorly imagined, ruthlessly uninsightful story. It’s like listening to a musically brilliant opera with the book taken directly from a TV movie of the week, or (to take an analogy perhaps closer to my […]

continue reading »

 
 

Utilitarian Review 5/29/10

Asterios Polyp Roundtable In the coming week (and a few days) we’re going to have an extended roundtable on David Mazzucchelli’s Asterios Polyp. Besides the usual Utilitarians, columnists Matthias Wivel and Domingos Isabelinho are also planning to weigh in — and we’ll also have guest posts from Derik Badman and Craig Fischer. So please check […]

continue reading »

 
 

Original Art: Conspicuous Consumption

It’s been about a week since the close of the May Heritage Comics Art Auction and the dust is settling on another set of controversial results. The topic has been talked out on various list and message boards and collectors have moved on to the next spectacle. The rest of the comics world remains largely […]

continue reading »

 
 

Gantz: A Comment

(Being a sideways response to Noah’s review of Monster Volume 1) Synopsis: Ordinary Japanese are being snatched from the jaws of death by an alien force (Gantz) which puts them to work hunting down extraterrestrials prowling the streets of Tokyo. Armed with cybernetic suits and devastating guns, their lives are constantly on the line in […]

continue reading »

 
 

Feminine Dignity and the Empowered Sexpot, Part 1

The film version of Barbarella gets a semi-bad rap as an over-the-top sex farce with an almost-camp sensibility and a genuinely bad rap as a film either completely disengaged from its own gender politics or completely sexist: While women strove to clothe their gender with dignity, Barbarella endeavored to strip them of it…Barbarella’s sexual appeal […]

continue reading »

 
 

Star-Spangled Panties (and some alternatives): A History in Covers

Wonder Woman covers through the decades.

continue reading »