Discussion about the Alt★Hero series of comics and graphic novels.
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By The Observer
#787
So, #4's out. Vox wasn't kidding when he said it would be incendiary. You can just hear the cucks wailing about political comics in the distance.

-Cliff Cosmic really did a good job making the ugliness of various antifa members stand out.

-The incompetency of the UN team is staggering. Even the UN honchos imply that they're there because they're eye candy and not because of any kind of merit. Seriously, complaining that the river is COLD?

-First Redshift, now Europa -- the GJI REALLY needs to stop splitting the party and start working as a team. Europa sees himself as the carry of the party, and it shows. If he's going to be effective, he's going to need to get over his ego. He was warned by the police, and that overconfidence brought him down.

His willingness to use snipers brings into question the moral high ground he claims -- I'm sure he could've easily defended the ladders should the need have arisen, but his ego's that big that he doesn't have time for small things like that and is willing to kill the opposition just to keep the spotlight on himself.

Judging by the last page, I really doubt he'll learn anything from this failure.

Come to think of it, what's going on in Barcelona to require Shade and Aqua's attention, anyway...?
User avatar
By E Deploribus Unum
#790
Best issue yet. Cliff has come a long way very quickly. More developed and believable backgrounds, and much more consistent character models. Inks are scratchier than #1, but I prefer that look anyway. And he's very strong on the fight scenes. There's a lot of dynamism there, and a definite Japanese influence. I like. Maybe a few too many big panels, but if that's what it takes to get AH out on such a consistent schedule, I can live with widescreen.

The battle between Durand and Captain Europa is nicely staged, and a lot of information gets passed along without being excessively wordy. I like that the super-folks keep getting injured. That makes sense. Physical invulnerability should not be overly common, otherwise everybody would be Captain Europa.

Waiting with bated breath for #5.
User avatar
By The Observer
#793
More thoughts.

-I just remembered why Barcelona rang a bell in my head -- Vox has posted on the Catalonian separatist situation before. Is something happening down there that requires Shade and Agualonia's presence? A hint at #7? Edit: huh, brain fart: it's Nano and Agua down in Spain on my second readthrough. Shade's unaccounted for...

-One more thing that struck me is the contrast between Durand and Europa in this issue and how they behave in positions of power. Consider Durand -- he won't abandon GI despite risk to himself, but more importantly is the relationship between him and Christian. On his own, Christian's probably a delta -- a little timid, prone to indecision and easily intimidated by adverse circumstances. With Durand taking control of the situation and giving him direction, he's able to exercise his talents effectively to GI's benefit instead of losing composure and giving in to panic. Durand stops to inspire and rally his followers to action, and Christian repays this by pulling his boss out of hot water twice now.

Compare this to Europa, who won't work with the SPC team and indeed is quite pleased at their failure, as it means he gets to show them up and grandstand. With Europa giving direction to the SPC greenhorns/incompetents, they might actually have gotten something done instead of being taken out of the picture immediately. In the last page, he's dragging himself out of the water while the French police are still floating around; for an ostensibly good guy, he's not very good. Like it or not, Europa's looking more and more like a gamma who's had authority thrust upon him. Even if he can be honest with himself, I suspect he hasn't had many failures to learn from after his sequens powers manifested.

I really hope Europa can learn something from this, perhaps with Dynamique or Shade drilling the point into his head, but with the way he's been behaving I'm not so sure about that; if he's a gamma he's just going to double down without any introspection whatsoever. It would be really enthralling to see villains grow in that regard, but for now Shade probably brings the most competence and level-headedness to the lot. Yeah, I hope we'll get to see what's going down in Barcelona...

-Thought: "Redshift is out." Where, or is he still out of commission? Europa says that they've been looking all over Europe for Durand and he knows Durand brought down Redshift, which means some time has passed since the end of #1. That means they should know about Christian from Redshift; simply letting him play his head games unimpeded is quite a massive oversight on the EU's part. Or did Redshift simply choose to hide details about what happened?
User avatar
By E Deploribus Unum
#794
The Observer wrote:
Mon Sep 03, 2018 3:13 am
On his own, Christian's probably a delta -- a little timid, prone to indecision and easily intimidated by adverse circumstances. With Durand taking control of the situation and giving him direction, he's able to exercise his talents effectively to GI's benefit instead of losing composure and giving in to panic.
I hadn't really thought about it, but there's some nice variety -- and reality -- in Vox's portrayal of the various approaches to physical combat. You have Christian, reluctant and overcoming natural cowardice. You have the Captain, full of personal confidence but approaching the battle in a bland and detached way. Durand is full of patriotic fervor. You can believe he would willingly die if he had to, but he has no intention of doing so if he can help it. Then there is the UN team, clearly way out of their depth with almost nothing to offer other than platitudes, who flee at first contact. Cliff also does some very nice physical stuff with the non-powered combatants that shows tons of personality.
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By Starboard
#795
The rookies were pretty ineffective. They are not tuned for combat. Cloud deviates from the plan to save a policeman. Although noble and heroic for a daily superhero, it takes her out of the fight when needed most. Candle has her back to wrong side thinking Antifa was an ally. She obviously didn't notice that the police were restraining GI with words and fighting Antifa with cracked riot shields. She also didn't pay attention to who was lobbing molotov cocktails. Yanzi was reduced to transport duty and saving her. What were his powers beyond flying and being strong enough to carry Candle out of the fray?

In other words, "C'est très bien!"
User avatar
By The Observer
#796
Starboard wrote:The rookies were pretty ineffective. They are not tuned for combat. Cloud deviates from the plan to save a policeman. Although noble and heroic for a daily superhero, it takes her out of the fight when needed most. Candle has her back to wrong side thinking Antifa was an ally. She obviously didn't notice that the police were restraining GI with words and fighting Antifa with cracked riot shields. She also didn't pay attention to who was lobbing molotov cocktails. Yanzi was reduced to transport duty and saving her. What were his powers beyond flying and being strong enough to carry Candle out of the fray?"
Agreed. I'd wager the SPC heroes' training mostly consisted of punching bags, controlled exercises where everything goes according to the script, and plenty of PC videos. They don't think quickly on their feet, can't deal with slight mishaps. They were pretty useless and inexperienced, which is why Europa should have provided oversight and said, "hey, kids, I think you're out of your depth. Let me show you how some of this is done." The SPC heroes clearly idolise Europa, and would certainly accept having him mentor them through what's possibly their first live situation. If nothing else, Antifa had Europa placards with them -- his simple presence would have protected them from being attacked by Antifa.

But he didn't. He wanted them to fail so that he could steal the spotlight for himself, betraying their belief in him. His triumphant grin in the following panels is really, really damning because it's petty, ugly behaviour we see in people all around us, and him being Sequens doesn't change that.
User avatar
By E Deploribus Unum
#799
The Observer wrote:
Mon Sep 03, 2018 2:39 pm
But he didn't. He wanted them to fail so that he could steal the spotlight for himself, betraying their belief in him. His triumphant grin in the following panels is really, really damning because it's petty, ugly behaviour we see in people all around us, and him being Sequens doesn't change that.
YES. This exactly. And I love that Vox doesn't spell it out with the agonizing clarity we would find at Marvel and DC, where it would take four panels to tell the story and you'd feel like you'd just been bludgeoned with a brickbat afterward. He just lets it hang for us to figure out. That's pretty darn self-assured comics writing, and very early in the game.
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By Summer95
#819
Nice to see GI in action! Art wise, I think this second Cliff Cosmic issue is a distinct improvement over the first. Not just the character art but also the environments and backgrounds, which were rather plain in issue 1. The panelling is nicer too, with a good variety of attractive layouts (including some diagonal lines, woo-hoo!), and nice colouring behind, in contrast to the spartan white used in most of issue 1. In fact the colouring was better as a whole. Warmer and richer.

I have trouble with those weird blank white eyes the UN teamsters have though. I guess it must be some kind of high-tech protection which happens to look white from outside, but I find it hard to believe in, and also it makes for less character in the face. Actually Captain Europa has them too, but not so prominently.

One thing I would've liked is more atmospheric weather to go with the giant brawl, rather than a nice sunny day. Just think of how dramatic things were in the Helm's Deep battle of LOTR 2, with heavy rain at night. Not that we have to go that far, but you get my gist.
E Deploribus Unum wrote: You have Christian, reluctant and overcoming natural cowardice.
I didn't see him as being cowardly. Rather, he was just concerned about the best way to be going about things, and also perhaps lacking a bit of confidence. Of course, he ended up doing fine. But hey, those police on the boat were never going to be any trouble anyway. From the look of page 23, the ladders were waaay too short. Someone at the station is gonna get fired for that!
User avatar
By E Deploribus Unum
#820
Summer95 wrote:
Sun Sep 16, 2018 6:40 pm
Art wise, I think this second Cliff Cosmic issue is a distinct improvement over the first. Not just the character art but also the environments and backgrounds, which were rather plain in issue 1. The panelling is nicer too, with a good variety of attractive layouts (including some diagonal lines, woo-hoo!)
I'm very excited to see what Cliff will produce ten issues down the road. The learning curve has been very abrupt, and he's adapted admirably.
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