5.07.2007

Graphic Novel Of The Month

Agents of Atlas: Premiere Edition Hardcover (Marvel): It's just hard not to like this book. Jeff Parker and Leonard Kirk dig up some ancient character archetypes from decades past and infuse them with a hip, modern sensibility that is unmistakably successful. What I like most about this book is that they're also completely transparent with their process in this deluxe, special edition. They literally show you the first appearance stories and the untapped potential that was in these characters. They flat out tell you the archetypes: "The Robot. The Goddess. The Space-Man, The Secret Agent, etc." They include behind-the-scenes materials on how the project came to fruition with editorial guidance, they explain the naming convention, they just lay it all out there for you. And what's there is a globe-trotting tale that pays respect to the past, but transcends to become a modern deconstruction of the generic "team up" book, and also manages to flesh out new characters like personal favorite Derek Khanata. Respectful to the past, poised for the future, entertaining, and beautiful to behold? 13 Minutes says... Grade A+.

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