Friday, July 04, 2008

Crime and Punishment

Super Smash Brothers Brawl is brilliant. I knew it would be.

For those who might be interested, my Friend Code for the game is 0388 0323 8824, and my Wii Code is 7714 7295 2393 7107.

I've yet to unlock Sonic the Hedgehog, so I can make that mid-90's Sega versus Nintendo rivalry come to life, but I'll get there. I've waited long enough, after all; the game came out in Japan and the US circa 1758, and when it was finally released here last week, my copy was delivered to Meg's workplace and was then promptly stolen. The building CCTV caught the thief, who turned out to be someone from one of the other firms in the complex; the police have closed the case, however, deciding that there isn't enough evidence. That's despite the following in the footage:

Two people walk by the mailbox. Both can confirm the game was there.
Someone walks up to the mailbox, puts something in her bag, and leaves.
The earlier two people return and can confirm that the game was gone.

However, since the camera is at slightly the wrong angle, you can't see what exactly that third person puts in her bag, so the police have decided that they can't press the case. On the plus side, the building owners refunded the cost of the game, since it was stolen on company property.

This week's post also brought a copy of Rol Hirst's PJANG!, and this was thankfully not stolen. I haven't looked back on the art I provided since I finished it, and seeing it now makes me cringe a bit, but that's pretty common for me. I've heard that such a reaction is healthy, because it means you're aware of the faults in your work, and that's a first step to improvement. I hope so. The other two stories are illustrated by Tony McGee and Andrew Cheverton; I'm a huge fan of Tony's work (I thoroughly recommend Angel Nebula, in particular), but I have to say that Chev's strip is my favourite here. Part of that is down to the writing; it's the best of the three stories by far, a sort of revenge thriller with a creepy, almost Clive Barkerish, twist. Chev's art is what really grabbed me, though; I've not seen his artwork in print before, so I don't know if he usually goes for the Mike McMahon-esque style he uses here, but it's a striking approach and fits the unsettling tone of the story quite well.

Tony's work is good too, of course, and the writing in all three stories is as strong as I expect from Rol, but that one story is really good stuff, and easily worth the (very reasonable) £1.75 cover price. Sir Nigel of Lowrey disappoints by only providing a cover, but it's a great one, so I can't complain too much. And thanks for the Death's Head cameo, Nige!


  1. Your strip was alright as well K ;-)

    Nicking Super Smash Brothers? How low can you get? Maybe it was the same duffer from Nintendo, trying to make sure it never reaches these shores. Tis a cliche, but Ninty really does hate Europe.

  2. Cheers, K. I like that the comic has three very different stories, each with very different art - that makes it a strong collection in my book. And I think Rol chose the artists well.

    Like you, I look back on my art and start to pull it to pieces (the lack of some backgrounds in mine is shocking), but I appreciate the McMahon comments. I'm lucky enough to be on friendly terms with Mick, and have bought some pages from him - these have helped me immensely with construction and faces, particularly Mick's angular, straight line approach. Once I have the basics, I hope to develop a more personal style.

  3. Without wishing to overly backslap, was equally impressed with your starkly graphic art Chev. Could see the McKeever influence you mentioned straight away, and a bit of McMahon now K's pointed it out :) It's certainly on the way to developing a style all of its own though.

    Like Kelvin says, you never stop being your own worst critic, which is how it should be, otherwise you turn into another John Byrne. And nobody wants that.

  4. I must confess my near-total ignorance of (Ted) McKeever, otherwise I'd have picked up on it too!

  5. Well as I bought said book I feel I'm entitled to my opinion and my opinion is that you're all cunts!

    Especially Kelvin!