There is one thing that I think comics have gotten a lot better at over the years and as a whole is telling non cape stories and character development. A lot of that can be traced back to the early 2000’s as publishers started experimenting with your non typical characters and stories that were a little grittier as they abandoned the comic book code. One of the writers that seemed to flourish in this new liberated environment was Warren Ellis who continues to amaze me with his current run on Green Lantern. I know not all of his work has been stellar but how he approaches a character and establishes them is truly unique and there is one series of his that I will always be protective of.
Key Points> Retired Extremely Dangerous (RED) is what it meant in the movie that was adapted in 2010 but was a little different in the 2003 comic that came out of Homage Studios. It’s a great spy story, as a retired hit man suddenly has his organization flip on him and his status goes from Green to Red. It was only a three issue run with Cully Hamner doing the art and felt like there was going to be so much more for this but it never happened. Lack of interest? WildStorm getting absorbed by DC? Ellis got board? What ever the reason the story is great and you find yourself cheering on a hitman who has obviously done some seriously bad things in his life and it doesn’t matter because he’s been wronged now and it needs to be fixed. I love when this is done well and where last weeks Wanted was a quick trip to the dark side this story is told with a little more flair and eloquence with characters that are firmly established Vs. one finding his way in. The 2010 film is a little different and adds a few characters and substance for the plot while still incorporating the violence it’s not as much a focus and the humor helps with that. Bruce Willis and John Malkovich are magic on the screen together but honestly there is chemistry with this entire cast. Bruce’s character Frank (Paul Moses in the comic) is everything I could have wanted and more as you compare the two and while the comic is great and simple; full of all the right spy elements you would expect the film gives it that much more. When they released this to video there should have been a copy of the trade included it’s that good and in that rare instance the film is better than the book. For me anyway.
Negative Zone> I know a lot of people went looking for the trade after finding out the film was based on it and being disappointed. Some thought it was too violent, (It’s nothing compared to Wanted) missed the characters from the film, or just overall not what they expected. The story is great, the movie was better I get that but if you take it for what it is you will enjoy this read. I am not sure if this is still in print and with it only being three issues should be easy enough to find in the binds but has been awhile since I have seen them out in the wild. We are sponsored by All C’s who is doing weekly live auction’s with one being held today at 2:30 and is still offering delivery service as well. Next week I’m thinking about going back over to the Marvel side but also wrestling with a potential DC book as well, let me know or be here next week and see.
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