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[personal profile] laughing_tree posting in [community profile] scans_daily

'There's only so many times I can say "folklore is the operating system of culture" before people start expecting me to conclude my talks by turning into a flock of crows and flapping out the nearest window, in any case.' -- Warren Ellis

Date: 2015-08-09 11:23 pm (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
I do love the idea of someone trolling the Turing Test just for fun.

Date: 2015-08-10 03:24 pm (UTC)
mrosa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] mrosa
It'd have been... interesting if we had actually seen it instead of just hearing from a talking head.

Why don't most so-called current comic book writers just admit they want to write plays, and that the visuals mean nothing to them?

Date: 2015-08-10 08:02 pm (UTC)
mrosa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] mrosa
Talking to a computer? Not at all, I wanted to read a verbal representation (together with visuals since comics ARE a combination of words and pictures) of that "something that was responsively intelligent but wasn't imitating a human" and that "scared the shit out of people."

Surely a WRITER would take up the challenge of actually putting into WORDS a machine that could carry such power, or at least try. Think of TAO in Moore's W.I.L.D. Cats driving a hero insane with mind games - if you know the pages in question, you'll remember its intricae mix of words and pictures (a very good use of repetition, in fact).

Instead here we just have actors on a stage TALKING about something that, for reasons we'll never know, scared the shit out of people with its alleged responsive intelligence. Yes, to me the creative team clearly wanted to make a play, and unfortunately they succeeded.

Date: 2015-08-11 05:18 pm (UTC)
mrosa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] mrosa
Oh well, what can I say? I prefer everything in, I prefer to have the author dazzle me in every page with the result of hard imaginative work. Hints and anticipation? These scenes had no such effect on me.

By the way, I think it's, peculiar to say the least, that you diminish the excellent effect of Moore's scene - which, of course, is to show how mentally powerful TAO is - on the basis of it being a superhero story operating under laws of suspension of disbelief. I missed the part where Ellis was trying to write a Harvey Pekar comic book, what with the glowing magical thingamabob at the end. You know, like the ones you often see in superhero comics.

Date: 2015-08-12 04:54 am (UTC)
captainbellman: It Was A Boojum... (Default)
From: [personal profile] captainbellman
Playing Spriggan's Advocate, here: an immersive theatre group like "Punchdrunk" could pull off something vaguely similar, though without the gradual transformation. Hell, I remember their masterpiece of last year, "The Drowned Man", had them recreating a forestry trailer park and a desert encampment, among other things, on different floors of a building near Paddington.

Date: 2015-08-11 02:23 pm (UTC)
captainbellman: It Was A Boojum... (Default)
From: [personal profile] captainbellman
I'm open to your suggestions as to how a human writer would depict a machine specifically designed to have a sentient intelligence while not acting in a way remotely recognisable as human. Especially when said machine is also meant to be believably scary.

"Less is more" works sometimes. The reason the aforementioned incident exists within the scene is to characterise Bridgit, through implication. Besides, adding a flashback within a flashback in an already fragmented narrative would just confuse things. Especially as you'd have to add similar one-panel flashbacks for the other characters and risk overly decompressing the action and thrust of the story.

Sure, if this was a story focusing on artificial intelligences in a purely sci-fi setting with Brigid as the 'main' protagonist, I could concede that Ellis had done wrong here. But it isn't, and the Turing-beater isn't the focus of the story anymore than the astronauts and their encounter with space fungi in "Supergod" - it was the result of that encounter that was relative to the thrust of the story.

(I may be particularly stung because you're criticising one of my favourite panels of the series. Shalvey's positioning of Brigid under her hoodie tells us half of her anecdote, plus the aftermath, the effect it had on her, her (in)ability to discuss it, her general attitude to the horrors of this world, purely by implication. A lesser writer would have turned it into a long and rambling monologue, *cough*Bendis*cough*, or a self-righteous rant, *cough*Hickman*cough*, but Ellis trusts his audience enough to let their imagination fill the gaps, and relies on Shalvey enough to make the panel itself haunting - where a lesser artist would have had her scowling or suddenly dipped in shadows, projecting rather than hiding her emotions. She is creating a visual echo of what she describes - hiding her eyes, the primary communicator of human emotion, to make herself 'unreadable'.)

(I like this comic a lot you guys)
Edited Date: 2015-08-11 02:35 pm (UTC)

Date: 2015-08-10 12:16 am (UTC)
big_daddy_d: (Default)
From: [personal profile] big_daddy_d
Final panel reminds me of Highlander.

Date: 2015-08-10 03:16 am (UTC)
captainbellman: It Was A Boojum... (Default)
From: [personal profile] captainbellman
The panel composition in this book is truly stunning. That one panel with Brigid tells us half of her story before we've even read the speech bubble.

Date: 2015-08-10 02:36 pm (UTC)
filthysize: (Default)
From: [personal profile] filthysize
Declan Shalvey is just fantastic and really understands sequentials.

Look at this article where he explains the basics of comic book composition..

Date: 2015-08-10 08:05 pm (UTC)
mrosa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] mrosa
I disagee. In the second to last panel of the final scan, I had to look a few times before I realized that was not a mouth laughing at an exploding lamp post, but an eyeball staring at it. Even now I look at it and first of all see a grinning mouth. I find it very clumsy.

Date: 2015-08-11 02:39 pm (UTC)
captainbellman: It Was A Boojum... (Default)
From: [personal profile] captainbellman
You may be very alone in that opinion. I realise it's me saying this (successive winner of the "most tenuous connections" award in s_d commentary), but I am really struggling to see a mouth there.

Date: 2015-08-11 05:22 pm (UTC)
mrosa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] mrosa
I'm probably the only one, but it's what I continue to see when I look at it, before I adjust my mind to remember that's an eyeball. Perhaps it'd be better if I actually saw an iris in the albuginea. It looks to me like parted lips with white teeth showing.

Date: 2015-08-10 04:00 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] doodleboy
Kind of like how cheery Maria is while everybody reveals their dark secrets. Now she's tired and beats people with canes.

I wonder if the weird sandwich is going to be a running rag through the whole series.

Also too bad there isn't enough room for the splashpage of Declan Shalvey and Jordie Bellaire showing off.
Edited Date: 2015-08-10 06:09 pm (UTC)

Date: 2015-08-11 02:40 pm (UTC)
captainbellman: It Was A Boojum... (Default)
From: [personal profile] captainbellman
"Kind of like how cheery Maria is while everybody reveals their dark secrets. Now she's tired and beats people with canes."

I read that as an ambiguous mix of "What the hell have I got myself into" and "Please don't make me tell you what happened."

Also, (and again: it is me saying this), I'm half-certain the using-her-cane-as-a-beating-stick is inspired by Ellis' experience of Alan Moore.
Edited Date: 2015-08-11 02:42 pm (UTC)


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