Saturday, February 23, 2008

I am soooo Looking forward to this (the first in a series)

I can not tell you how much I am looking forward to this DVD:Justice League: The New Frontier. Really, my excitement level for this is sort of past the acceptable. And this is even after having watched DC Comics first foray into straight to DVD fare: Superman Doomsday, which was a travesty of epic proportions. And the less said about it the better. But while I enjoyed the subject matter of the Superman Doomsday comic (the death and rebirth of Superman), I simply adored story of The New Frontier. And the simple reason for this: Darwyn Cooke.

Darwyn Cooke is easily one of the most exciting artists in comics today. Rarely will I ever get a book just for an artist. Cooke is one, Ted Mckeever another, but after than I can not think of anyone else I would seek out strictly for the art. This is easily Cooke's masterwork and to see it translated into animation makes me nearly swoon with gleeful anticipation. And trust me, me swooning at all, let alone gleefully is fairly out of character for me, what with my normal grumpy disposition.

This is a classic retelling of DC Comics silver age years, well sort of. It is well entrenched in DC's line of Elseworlds stories, a hodge-podge of "what if..." propositions (ie. what would batman be like in a Victorian era Gotham, what would have happened if Superman landed in Russia rather than Kansas, etc...). In other words, this is not the Justice League of recent JLU cartoon vintage. And as much as I liked that series, and I really did, this should be so much better.

In the graphic novel, Cooke took all areas of DC's historic silver age and tossed them like a salad to create an amazing story that his rich palate of 50s and 60s style make explode off the page like a bold, spicy vinaigrette. I am sure they have cut and altered the story to fit the 80 minutes for the film, which really begs the question, why the very short limit, and why, oh why, is this only straight to DVD??? Cooke's version of post WW II America is begging to be seen on the big screen. The magic of his art is that it is amazingly hopeful. While the design of his characters hark back to the era of his story, they are emboldened with an almost urgent flare. His story views the future with a wistful optimistic eye, even while taking on American military imperialism, racism, McCarthyism, etc... Even as a global threat over the main story, the heroes are able to seek a better tomorrow.

Will I be disappointed? Yes, more than likely, as I have read about some parts that have been nixed from the film that overwhelmingly were some of the most powerful moments in the story. But from the clips I have seen, just witnessing Cooke's art in motion will be a treat that might make me even consider buying my 2nd DVD. And now that he has left The Spirit I will have to take his art anywhere I can get it.

So I can just tell you that at some point on this coming Tuesday I will be watching this Film, and I am sure a review will follow.

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