Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Stumptown #4

Stumptown #4 - Comic of the DayI can't actually remember what the story was about, but I know I liked it.

Independent comic book creators have the luxury of taking their time with a comic. The writer and artist have the ability to go through several drafts to make sure the product being released to the public is the creator's absolute best. Independent titles can do this because they are not as wide spread as comics in the Marvel or DC lines which have tens of thousands of paying customers waiting for their comic books monthly and weekly. An indie book may have a slight following, but the publisher is not going to be made or broken based on if a book is released on set dates.

As I mentioned above, no specific time-table in which a comic needs to be created by seems like it may be a good thing, but it can actually turn out to be quite detrimental to the independent comic book, as well.

In the case of Stumptown #4, Greg Rucka and Matthew Southworth certainly put together a book I thoroughly enjoyed reading; unfortunately, I forgot what lead to this point in the story that the payoff didn't seem to have as much impact as a closing of a story should. Rucka places dialog in his characters mouths that seem to come straight from recordings of real events. Plus, Southworth style is so subtle the storytelling is allowed to do it's job and tell a story without distraction from overly visual details...engrossed without lingering per panel. The comic of the day feels natural and not forced, probably due to the extra amount of content filled pages that accompany the $3.99 title. Many books that set readers back $4 end up giving you some throw away extra story in the back of the book, by another writer and artist. Yeah, I'm looking at you Captain America!

Additional pages to make for an individual good read does not make-up for the fact that I lost a bit of interest due to the 2 month wait. Stumptown, unlike other indie titles, does get a pass for having to wait a long time for the title because Greg Rucka is attached to it. When a big name writer is attached to a book there will be fans that will wait and not worry about the fact that everything that happened in the previous issues is forgotten or hazy; yet, if another indie comic title without a big name on it tried pulling this Stumptown lagger action that title would be just another forgotten title amongst the indie graveyard.

In the end I'm left not really saying much. I wish the book came out regularly so that I could remember what the story was about. But either way, I'm still going to pick up Stumptown because it's just that good.

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