Archive for the ‘Project Vertigo’ Category

November 10th, 2013 Meeting: Project Vertigo 3.4

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

Project Vertigo: 3.4 Jack vs. The Doom Patrol

Thai Basil: Downtown Phoenix

Now that the site is back up and running, I figured we could do some changes. Each meeting I’ll take anonymous opinions about the books.
There may be more or less quotes than members who show up and I might quote someone twice.
Jack of Fables Vol. 4: Americana
by Bill Willingham
Quotes from members:
“Didn’t read ****”
“Lots of fun.”
“Like the classic folktale visit but they didn’t spend any time in one place.”

Doom Patrol, Book 1: Crawling From the Wreckage
by Grant Morrison
Quotes from members:
“Loved it – Not what I expected it to be.”
“Kind of dialog I like to read in a book.”
“Doom Patrol. Mind go “Boom.””


Saturday, November 2nd, 2013

Last update over a year ago! >_<

FINALLY Updates. The Books: Read is now up to date! Front page updated. Minor changes around the site.

I’ll see about keeping this up.

Next Meeting is on the 10th (I need to start reading)! Got to love Project Vertigo, even if Vertigo doesn’t want to cooperate with keeping books in print.


Project Vertigo – Sandman/Preacher 6

Tuesday, April 8th, 2008

It used to be that when asked for the difference between Sandman and Preacher, I could point to Sandman and say, “That is the one without all the male rape.” Not anymore, thank you very much Neil Gaiman. I’m not sure what happened at Vertigo in the 80s and 90s, but it apparently became the man on man capital of comics. I suppose because Vertigo is “edgy” it felt the impetus to take on non consensual gay sex. I am really grasping for any explanation for all of the male rape that seems to go on in that imprint.

Preacher reflects society in the sense that male rape is treated as something of a joke. A “ha ha, you got only got raped because you secretly enjoyed it” finger pointing exercise. I won’t get into the implications of this in the psychological or societal sense, but it is interesting to note that female rape is never treated in the same light hearted fashion, instead presented as the terrible crime/victimization that rape represents. It is really curious that both books hit on this same topic in completely different ways. Sandman, as usual, tends to be more adult about the subject. This despite, or perhaps because of, being written by someone with a last name that is pronounced “gay-man”.

Buggery aside, I feel like this collection of Sandman could be best described as “Neil Gaiman reads a history book.” The stories kind of ebb and flow with no real strand tying them together. Preacher is very linear. Sandman much less so. There is no real story to speak of. No discernible reason these particular stories are collected together in a single edition, except perhaps a chronological order of printing. Morpheus rarely appears, despite being the titular character, and tends to act as a deus ex machina when he does. He is unchanging, which is strange compared to his earlier incarnations in the series, where he learned and grew and adapted.

I find I enjoyed that version of Morpheus more than the current all knowing, all seeing demi-god. I also enjoy the more traditional story structure of Preacher as it moves along. I view Sandman as a more casual read. Something I can pick up and work through leisurely whenever the fancy strikes. Preacher has more of an impetus behind it: I want to see what happens next.


Project Vertigo 2: Sandman 3 & Preacher 1

Wednesday, December 13th, 2006

A note to the reader: I shamelessly stole the bit about cats from my own blog on the subject, so don’t bother pointing it out. Also, it is even funnier when you realize I start bagging on Garth Ennis about a lack of originality later in this review. Don’t question it.

In Sandman volume 3, the series really starts to shine. The stories, while not presenting a cohesive whole, are certainly engaging. All save the cat story. There is nothing more annoying than cat people, and I had no idea Neil Gaiman was one of their foul ilk. People who own cats are only capable of discussing one topic – Their cats. Their worship of their feline counterparts makes the ancient Egyptians look tame by comparison. Here is a hint: Your cat is not mysterious. It is a cat. It is just like every other cat out there. Your cat does not love you. It loves the food you bring it. If you die, your cat will waste no time eating your face, leaving a grim skull faced reminder of feline treachery for your neighbors to find when they finally get down to searching out “that weird smell.” Your cat is not smart. Your cat is one step up the evolutionary ladder from a dog, which is borderline retarded. Unfortunately that step was “arrogance”, which is not a becoming trait when you lick your own ass and have barbed genitals. The earth will be a better place once we remove the blight upon the land known as cat owners. Enough about cats, and back to Sandman, who I note is definitely not a cat. Calliope is the best of the lot, and I feel like I am getting a better grasp on the Sandman character as the series progresses. Provided future cat based stories are avoided, I have high hopes for this series. Unless said cat is Lion-O from the Thundercats. He is bad ass. Or Cheetara. Rowr.

That brings me to Preacher. Preacher is a serious divergence from Sandman. Almost like switching from Lord of the Rings to Star Trek The Next Generation. Sure, you are still in nerd central, but the landscape is strange and unfamiliar. Though maybe Riker kind of looks like Aragorn if you squint hard, and you could confuse Picard for Gandalf as they are both swishy English types, and I am almost positive that someone somewhere has written a fan fiction combining the two worlds on the holodeck and involving Legolas making out with Wesley Crusher to stop a giant monster shaped like a penis. So maybe that is not the best example.

Where Sandman is dreamy and symbolic, Preacher is firmly rooted in the carnal. There are some scenes involving angels and talk about God in there, but they are physical entities rather than beings of spirit, and it is presented in a mocking fashion. Garth Ennis seemingly takes great joy in trying to be edgy by assaulting religion while simultaneously knowing little about it, a tactic which is about as edgy as a jello sphere. Do not try to picture what that looks like or your brain will melt. I think his views on religion were summed up by the splash page featuring an angel and demon copulating. I really did not need to see it, but he threw it in my face anyway, just to be obnoxious. I’m sure goatee wearing, black clad, hipster, self aggrandizing atheists everywhere loved that and got bathroom reading use out of it for years, but I did not care for it, as it added nothing to the proceedings. And why was the demon female? Oh, right, because Koop taught us that devil girls are hot. Not only was it arrogant and obnoxious, it was unoriginal. A trifecta. Bravo, sir. Bravo.

Preacher was funny, but not thought provoking. Fun, but not substantive. I am eager to see where the Jesse goes, but I do not expect to learn anything along the way. To me, what perfectly sums up the series is the “Go **** yourself” joke involving Jesse and the sheriff. I understood what was implied, but then Ennis saw fit to cut to the sheriff in an ambulance, where we learn that he severed his own member and inserted it into his own rectum. All well and good. Then, later, we cut back to Jesse explaining what happened. Again. Congratulations, Garth Ennis, you have now explained the joke twice, because your audience is seemingly too stupid to grasp the subtle nuance with which you deftly executed that “joke”. At that point, I couldn’t help but feel like the author was pissing on my head… a feeling you can simulate for $20 and a ticket to Bangkok. Because in Bangkok you can pay someone $20 to urinate on you. I paid $20 for someone to pee on my head in Bangkok.

Do you see how insulting that is?

I feel like both books had their strengths, with Sandman being the stronger and more adult of the two. There is definitely a place for Preacher, and the differences between the works should provide some nice point/counter-point in the future, provided Ennis can refrain from insulting his readers and Gaiman can rein in his borderline illegal love of cats. I am implying Gaiman may engage in bestiality with felines. Neil Gaiman might be a cat ****er. (I don’t actually believe this. Please don’t sue me, Neil Gaiman.)