I heard about this a couple of months back when it first hit the book stores as a monthly comic title. I kinda slept on it, not really, I just prefer to read dope series in trade form, collected volumes of the individual issues usually packaged better in quality. They call them graphic novels. But then again, my readers already know that about me. By the way…
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I just picked up the commemorative issue of Daredevil #500. Quietly, over the past 5 or 6 years now, Daredevil has consistently been one the BEST Marvel series running. Written by Eisner Award-Winning writer Ed Brubaker and currently drawn by Michael Lark, the shit they’ve been putting Matt Murdock through of late is 10 times way more sadistic that what legendary story teller Frank Miller could ever conceive of firing the blind defender’s way during his ground breaking run on the title back in the ’80′s. Long and short is, remember the Hand? They’re that evil mystical sect of mercenary ninjas that Miller introduced to the title and whom Daredevil has been battling a full on war with for over 20 years now. Anyways, in this issue, Matt Murdock, p/k/a Daredevil asumes leaership and gains complete and total control of the fucking Hand. Really.
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Vertigo just released vol. 1 of the ongoing Unknown Soldier series. Vertigo is an imprint of DC Comics, a line geared for more of an adult audience. Vertigo bangs out the some of the best titles known to man. I lie, I die. Written by Joshua Dysart and pencilled by Italian comic book artist Alberto Ponticelli, Unknown Soldier takes place in Uganda during 2002. The story centers around Ugandan born Dr. Lwanga Moses, who, along with his family, was forced to flee the country when he was 7. Raised in the United States, he becomes a doctor and marries Sera, another African physician. After civil war ravages Uganda for over 15 years, Lwanga and Sera return to the country in 2002 on a pacifistic misson, intent on using their medical skills for humanitarian purposes. Once there, they realize they’ve entered a world filled with violence, run by children soldiers who display the most brutal of acts towards opposing tribes and unfortunate civilians, including some horrendous shit committed against girls and small children. I’m talking machete amputations, automatic rifles and land mines. Gruesome B. Pushed over the edge, Moses starts experiencing out of body moments where he realizes he might be more than the peace lover he thought he was. Finding himself expertly handling all sorts of fuckerish weapons and taking anyone in his way out with the most effective of hand to hand combat techniques during some tight moments, Moses loses himself to an emerging personality from the depths of his psyche, very much similar in nature to how Jason Bourne comes to realize how skilled he is in the deadly arts in that Bourne franchise. Having his face disfigured through a series of unfortunate events, Moses soon becomes an unstoppable killing machine against those intent on causing harm to Uganda’s unprotected innocents. Nigga goes the fuck off.
The New York Times just did a story on Unknown Soldier and goes into how Dysert, in prep for the story, spent some time in Uganda doing extensive research on Uganda’s culture, history and all things surrounding the recent civil war. He returned with more than “1,000 photographs that Mr. Ponticelli could use as references for the illustrations.” Unknown Soldier is actually a remix of a character introduced in the DC universe back in 1966, said character whose exploits surrounded the events of World War II. That character was white.
I just finished this volume earlier this week. You all know how I like to like stuff. Especially dope stuff. This is it right here. Great story, beautiful artwork, well choreographed action sequences and of course, the most unadulterated types of gully that only child soldiers and machete hacked limbs can bring to a tale. September is here my friends, summer’s over and now it’s back to school we go. Make sure you’re well prepared this semester by getting an early start on your required reading. Trust when CJ says Unknown Soldier Vol.1: Haunted House is required reading.