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Old 09-23-2012, 05:26 AM   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Melbourne, Aust
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The Underwater Welder

Written and drawn by Jeff Lemire
Published by Top Shelf
Jeff Lemire is hot property right now, being one of the DC’s lead writers in the revamped DC Universe. In addition to that he has been writing and drawing Sweet Tooth, his own title about a post-apocalyptic future, partly populated by hybrid animal children. And if that was enough he has recently published his long gestating graphic novel, The Underwater Welder.
I’ve been waiting for this one, since I was introduced to Lemire’s excellent Essex County, a poignant tale of loss in rural Canada.
In The Underwater Welder similar themes are explored. Despite a degree, Jack Joseph insists upon living in his small home town, and working as, well, an underwater welder. The work is dangerous, and takes him away from his heavily pregnant wife Susan, who understandably is not very happy with these insistences. One of his dives goes wrong, and he sees something that he can’t possibly be seeing, and that sets of a chain of events where Jack has to face his reasons for staying, his losses over the years and his anxieties about impending fatherhood, in frankly some quite interesting ways.
Essex County was all about relationships, and this is no different. Lemire brilliantly looks at Jack and Susan’s relationship, their tenderness with each other as well as their frustrations, in ways genuinely touching and tense as they navigate their way through the story. But there is science fiction there too, with the book drawing many comparisons to The Twilight Zone, as the book dips into a downright weird middle segment. This though just drives the relationships further as Jack has to confront things in a way he has never had to before.
On the art side of things Lemire’s pencils fill the book. At times sketchy, at other times quite soft and at other times quite detailed, as fits to story. The varied use of page layout adds to the confusion and mixed feelings Jack has about his present situation.
This book is excellent, and should not be missed.


GL Annual #1.

Wow was this issues just full of shockers!

The biggest revelation to me came when the Guardians opened the Chamber of Shadows to reveal even more Guardians within than the ones we've known all these years. The contrast in personalities between the 2 factions makes the main Guardians look all the more villainous.

I know the Guardians are supposed to be devoid of emotion but their actions over the past year seem possessed rather than just coming to a change of mind. Just way too radical a change imo and has me thinking if Krona has anything to do with this since he's been M.I.A. for a good while.

The fate of Hal Jordan & Sinestro, although not completely surprising after what was revealed in the Book of the Black last month, is another moment that obviously stood out thanks to the ever creepier Black Hand.

This issue also sees the birth of the Guardians' "Third Army". What better way for the Guardians to have a perfect army than to have one that's of their own flesh & blood which functions similar to the virus that Agent Smith eventually became in the Matrix.

Who this First Lantern is that was freed from the Chamber of Shadows & helped spawn this new army is still a mystery to be revealed in the next few months I assume. His is the voice that's been emanating from all the different corps rings over the past few months screaming, "Let me out!" and now thanks to the twisted Guardians...he's out!

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