Thursday, March 13, 2008

There are Heroes in Birmingham!

That’s right, there are Heroes in Birmingham. I know this because I read about them in Rachel Kadushin’s fine comic, Heroes in Birmingham. She currently has two issues out and a third one is on the way (I’ve only read the first issue, but I really enjoyed what I read, so as soon as I can acquire the second, I'll be grabbing that one up as well). The 32-page story is about a bunch of heroes living in Birmingham (no state identified).

One of the very interesting things about this is that there is no text page explaining who these characters are. Nothing to say if this is the present or near future, and very little in the way of expository material to slow down the pace of the story. To be sure, this is not only a bit odd, but a touch confusing as well. Still, taken as a whole, it really doesn't detract for the narrative as it forces the reader to pay attention to what is happening.

Also, there are more than a few non-verbal sequences that simply explode with action, no ranting heroes and villains spoting off about whatever nonsence fills the writer’s heads (I don’t know how many of you have ever been in a fight, but as a rule, you simply don’t go on about your philosophy and the nature or th oppressed man and crap like that. You get down and fight.

I think that years of reading comics makes us think that writers have to fill each panel with words, or it isn’t actually written. Rachael proves that simply isn’t so,and there is a lot of good that can be learned form this. Needless to say, the story reads well, the art is very nice, and the story moves along at a rapid clip. Again, my only real clip is that I’m not entirely sure what is going on all the way through.

At times the story seems a touch disjointed (as she moves from one set of heroes and characters to another) leaving the reader in the dust. Still, there is quite a bit of things going on here, and as a reader you feel that you have spent your money wisely on a book with a full 32 pages of art (some home-grown comics that I’ve picked up have way less than a newsstand comic, and cost way more, which always makes me feel that I’ve been gypped. Not so much of that here. You get the full measure.

So, with that, I’m recommending Rachel Kadushin’s comic, Heroes in Birmingham, and urging you all to find a copy and pick it up.

Well, having finally gotten through the stack of comics produced by friends of mine, I think I’ll go back to Spidey next time and let you know what I think about all that. Like that’s a big secret, eh?


Rachel Kadushin said...

Thanks for your energetic review, Bob. It focused on different things than other reviews that I have gotten for "Heroes In Birmingham Issue 1". FYI Issue 2 does have a recap, and there are character profiles on the website. I'm glad you were able to follow issue one by following the clues in the story and the art! I linked back to your blog.

rjsodaro said...

Thanks much, and you are very welcome!

Rachel Kadushin said...

I just wanted to add, that this comic book would not exist without the artwork of Ed Meares. The 13 panel page was his design (he paneled the concept behind the major fight sequence in the issue), and we had a fruitful collaboration.

Tommy said...

I always get a kick when you showcase other work, Bob, and then the person/people who worked on it stop by the blog. :)

rjsodaro said...

Heh, yeah, me too. Only the best in this blogspace!

Mike (“The Bloody Red”) Baron talks Comics, Books, and More!

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