The A-Z of Underrated Comic Runs: The Boys (2006)

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There’s a whole lot of comics out there. Unfortunately, with hundreds of releases every week, some hidden gems are bound to get swept under the rug. We’re here to bring you what we consider to be some of the best underrated comic runs.

Note: This is limited to material I own/have read, so if you feel like I’ve missed out on better stories, don’t get too hurt. Or better yet, tell me in the comments, and let me know about it!

Last time, we looked at one of the genre’s most overlooked superheroes, Aquaman. This time, we go to the other end of the spectrum. The Boys is a recent work by controversial Irish writer Garth Ennis (Preacher), and artist Darick Robertson (Transmetropolitan). Famous for his outward loathing of the superhero genre, Garth Ennis puts his all into this book. With despicable superhero characters, and a no-nonsense bastard team to combat them, The Boys is the literal manifestation of Ennis’ anger. It’s a combination of political commentary, humour, satire, and all out super-being action, penned with the dark and beautiful vision of Darick Robertson.

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Veteran Punisher writer Garth Ennis returns to the character in prequel series

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Irish comics writer Garth Ennis will be returning to a longtime character of his, The Punisher, but not in a way you’d expect. The writer is infamous for his gory, excessively violent stories (see: Preacher, The Boys), and he got to go all out with this character, for about 10 years.

Now he’s coming back, but with a different approach this time. The series, titles ‘The Platoon’, will focus on Frank Castle’s early days in the Vietnam war, before he took up the Punisher title. It will be published under the Marvel MAX imprint, and will most likely feature no giant white skulls, or significant Marvel characters. Garth Ennis revealed the details at an Avatar Press conference for London Super Comic Con on Saturday, as Bleeding Cool reports. He will be collaborating with previous artist Goran Parlov, who’s since worked on titles like Mark Millar’s Starlight.

It’ll be interesting to see a younger, more inexperienced Frank, as largely all of the titles he’s featured in depict a grizzly, disturbed war veteran. And with Ennis’ penchant for interesting character development, I’m sure it’ll be quite a ride watching him transform into this character. Sure, it’ll be largely a Vietnam War story with Marvel’s deadly vigilante slapped on, but if anyone can make it interesting, it’s Garth Ennis.

BOOK CLUB: Preacher Book 6

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We’ve decided to to dedicate some longer posts to reviewing TPBs, collections and hardcovers of all kinds. Since a lot of stories are best told as a long form, we feel it’s necessary to review them as a whole. Today, Patrick’s reviewing a new collection of the final story from the classic 1990’s series Preacher. Hilarious, Tarantino-esque and remarkably bold, he explores the deeper meanings of this series, and how it finishes up.

The measure of a great action comic is how close it can come to absurdity, only to pull up the reins at the last second, and deliver something genuinely awesome. The Preacher series has so far been pretty good at this: a gigantic fat man falling from a helicopter to crush the descendant of Christ? Absurd.  How about a lone gunman taking on an entire army of fanatic Christian militants? Fairly awesome. Continue reading