Kiss My Chaos!

http://comicbookdb.com/graphics/comic_graphics/1/169/85472_20070219090822_large.jpg I remember that I bought Kissing Chaos at MoCCA Art Fest 2007 but don't recall why. It might have been browser's guilt, that I'd been looking at what was available on the tables, possibly trying to avoid eye contact with creators (something I dislike as a tabler) so I wouldn't feel obligated to buy something from them. Eye contact must have been made between me and auteur Arthur Dela Cruz because my edition is signed and I think I even have a lobby card with the cover image on it that he gave me with the book. Maybe he's an awesome guy, but awesome is not my memory.

Five years later and having transported this book around various parts of the country I pulled it off the shelf today and read it in two brief sittings. Brief is the operative word. After reading the first chapter (re: issue), I counted the pages as it had seemed like very little had happened other than to set the plot for the remainder of the book (collecting 8 issues and more) and introduce the three main characters and maybe tidbits about who they are. These are some good first steps for a first issues, but not enough to really engage an satisfy me, but I'd dropped probably at least $15 on it (retail price of $17.95 from Oni Press) and wanted to try to get my money's worth.

Hell, if it wasn't for some beautiful looking women in the book I don't know that I'd have too much positive to state about it, not that it's a bad book. The artwork is fluid and pretty and serves to tell the story. I enjoy the depth Dela Cruz gives each page with the way he uses gray tones. Definite plus here.

With the remainder of the book, not too much happened with the plot, though it is sort of interesting how a guy, Damien, a young girl, Angela, and a sexy thief, Raevyn, end up on the run together, with tension between the guy, the young girl obsessed with him, and the sexy thief. It's noticed by Angela that there is sexual tension between her protector and hero Damien, who doesn't seem to pay her much attention, and Raevyn, who seemingly has the option to leave the trio after being kidnapped at gunpoint for use of the car she was hotwiring when the police showed up to nab Damien for a murder he's accused of.

The dialogue...is OK. I'm not sure how old Damien and Raevyn are supposed to be, maybe early 20s while Angela may be underage and we only learn of what goes on in her head by reading her thought captions that read like a dear diary. Raevyn never shuts up and Angelia dislikes her for all of the nothing she says and Damien seems to be a somewhat overly typical guy once in this situation, with not much interesting to say or add to the plot.

There are some subplots that probably continue in later story arcs, but I don't think I'm likely to take the time to locate or read them, even if available through the library. Ultimately it's all nice to look at, but otherwise not terribly engaging. I'd like to see more happen in less time. Should anyone let me know the later issues get better, I may change my mind as I don't think Dela Cruz's writing is hopeless.

Check out the Kissing Chaos website for more information about the comic, its creator, and other work he's done.

For the image used in this review, I again give my thanks to the ComicBook Database.

Midnight Mover: It's Movin' Out...of My Collection

http://comicbookdb.com/graphics/comic_graphics/1/252/125580_20080421122626_large.jpg One dollar isn't too much to spend on an $11.95 TPB is it? This is about the cheapest print entertainment one could find, no?

Oni Press brings us Danny Shaw,  a chaperon for call girls who gets caught up in a tale involving murder, porn, a bunch of sex (duh, I already mentioned porn), his court marshal, and his shitty ass luck. Unfortunately author Gary Phillips doesn't provide a protagonist readers can much care for. Shaw's not necessarily unlikeable, but we're not given anything to like. He's like Cool Hand Luke, only not terribly cool. The remaining cast of characters is mostly made up of random ex-porn stars-cum-prostitutes (zing!) or call girls, two cops (one holier than thou, the other very kinky), some vatos, and the military asshole who fucked up Shaw's life in the first place my framing him for profiteering during the Gulf War.

Art team Jeremy Love and Jeff Watson provide a cartoony style of art that manages to tell the story, but isn't terribly appropriate for something along these lines. This seems like something Maleev, Lark,  (Sean) Phillips, or Miller could've told better. The original covers of the four issues are probably the best part. I know I just read this book, but I can't remember already, but think there are places where visual transitions are needed as one scene becomes another. I almost didn't finish the book.

Book purchased from the bargain bin at the otherwise awesome Comix Connection, Mechanicsburg, PA. If you really want this book, it can be swapped from me, along with many other books of similar, worse, or hopefully better quality via SequentialSwap.

Image used without permission from the ever-awesome ComicBookDB.com. Thanks guys!