East of West 17

east of west 17

Today, Drew and Taylor are discussing East of West 17, originally released February 4th, 2015.

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…

Star Wars

Drew: Myths are almost all told from a third person omniscient perspective in the past tense; not only do we get a glimpse into the separate actions of both the Tortoise and the Hare, we understand that this race already happened. That second part is natural to storytelling in general — everything from personal anecdotes to the high-flyingest science fiction is told as if the events already happened. Curiously, both tense and narrative mode tend to disappear when working in a visual medium — the illusion that these actions are actually playing out in front of us is strong enough to override any confusion about who is telling this story, and when. To give visual storytelling a mythic quality requires making the past tense nature and omniscient narrator explicit, perhaps with a framing device a la The Princess Bride, or perhaps just with that innocuous introduction I included above. East of West 17 finds writer Jonathan Hickman slipping his narrator in, lending the proceedings the mythic qualities they rightly deserve. Continue reading

Daredevil 21

Alternating Currents: Daredevil 21, Drew and PatrickToday, Drew and Patrick are discussing Daredevil 21, originally released December  19th, 2012.

Drew: We often chide comics for their relatively high cost of entry. It’s easy enough to pick up random issues here and there, but to really dig into a series might require an understanding of decades of stories, and how any of it might matter now. What’s worse is that any given series may have crossed paths with any number of other series over its long history (and might just be crossing paths with any of them again soon). To committed fans, this creates an immersive, almost tactile world, but to folks hoping to ease their way into comics, that dense, interwoven history can be downright impenetrable. We’re generally willing to go along for the ride here at Retcon Punch (which is why we’ve aimed to cover essentially any crossover event DC throws at us), trusting that that dedication will be rewarded. In the final scene of Daredevil 21, Mark Waid turns that expectation on its head, actively rewarding our ignorance (or at least uncertainty) about exactly what’s going on.

Continue reading

Daredevil 20

Today, Patrick and (guest writer) Ray Bari are discussing Daredevil 20, originally released November  21st, 2012.

Patrick: Let’s talk about dramatic reveals. No, no — no spoilers before the jump (but boy-howdy: spoilers after the jump). There’s nothing worse than a botched reveal — the sense that the storytellers just don’t understand the value of their own story is discouraging as hell. But a well-deployed revelation — one that alters the fundamental nature of a character or conflict — should turn your stomach just from sheer excitement. Daredevil 20 drops two such revelations, and with an uncharacteristically graphic imagery, ratchets that stomach turning up to 11.

Continue reading