This Week In Spandex
This was a great week in comics for me. Joe the Barbarian is continuing to turn a simple premise into an emotional epic, Breaking into Comics the Marvel Way continues to be fun, Green Lantern #52 was predictable but provided some great back ground information on the white lantern, The Marvels Project and Captain America continue to show why Brubaker is such an incredible writer, Fraction did an amazing job bringing back Kitty Pryde in Uncanny X-Men #522, X-Factor #203 is still my guilty pleasure, and Secret Warriors #14 had a great holy s&%t moment. However, the issue that I felt needed to be reviewed is the fist issue of Mark Millar’s and Steve McNiven’s new creator owned project.
- Nemesis #1
- “Chapter 1”
- Writer: Mark Millar
- Artist: Steve McNiven
- Company: Marvel Comics/Icon
Mark Millar’s last project was Kick-Ass. This title appealed to so many because it tapped into the desire by all fanboys to become a superhero. Nemesis is the exact opposite of this concept. Instead of following the ideal that we can all become heroes, Millar decides to challenge the greatest assumption that the superhero genre is built on: this being, that if a person could change the world, they’d try to make a positive impact.
The point of this series is that one man has decided to become a supervillian and succeeds in bringing major cities to their knees. The story begins with Nemesis causing massive destruction in Tokyo by blowing up a skyscraper, destroying a monorail system, and using a high speed train to kill Tokyo’s police chief. It seems that Nemesis travels the world looking for police officers to challenge him in his battle of the wits. After Tokyo, Nemesis decides to go to DC and kidnaps the President of the United States as the start to his campaign against the police chief of DC.
In addition to challenging a fundamental aspect of the superhero origin myth, Millar – similar to what he did in Kick-Ass – portrays a world frighteningly similar to our own. I’ve read some criticism of this title because it lacks the ‘heart’ Kick-Ass had or that it is one big action movie. I’d have to say those reviewers may have missed the point of Nemesis. This title is supposed to have the cinematic feel of an action movie. This is in part for McNiven to continue to show off what an amazing artist he is; however, this is also for Millar to illustrate just how easy it could be for one person to terrorize a major city. While Nemesis does lack the emotional resonance that Kick-Ass had this works to point out that the real world is not run by good intentions, but by selfish motivations, ego, and pride. More over, the stability that people apply to modern society is as much a construct as the buildings that terrorist can so easily bring down.
Overall, Nemesis #1 was a fantastic issue that got me excited for the rest of the series. I just hope it’s on a more frequent schedule than Kick-Ass.