Suspended Animation Suspended Animation
by Michael Vance & Jon Suter

July 17, 1998

Reviews in this issue:

El Wendigo
The Disney Afternoon #9

The Realm #'s 8-13

El Wendigo

The rain in Spain falls mainly in the plains, not in my mailbox. The same is true for Spanish comic books. But today was unusual. My mailbox was awash not only with comics from Spain, but with the answer to a question raging among comics fans and professionals:

Is art or words and ideas more important in a comic book?

Among the wash was El Wendigo, a professional 'fanzine' (magazines produced for people obsessed).

This delightful obsession is filled with articles, photographs and artwork about comics and their creators. Oversized compared to most American magazines, and well designed from cover to cover, that 'delightful' remains guesswork unless you can read Spanish.

Frustration at my Spanish illiteracy was compounded because Suspended Animation will soon be added to this magazine, and I won't even be able to read what I write!

Yeah, yeah. I know. Neither can you.

A comic book light bulb (of low wattage) clicked on over my head, illuminating the answer to that question. Another magazine, Hombre Grande increased the wattage.

It's the simple, poignant story of a giant washed ashore and discovered by children.

The artwork is stunning. And as is true with a beautiful woman (attracted first by the beauty, one must know more), this beautiful artwork promised more than delivered. The fault lay in me.

Comics are stories. I couldn't know more because I couldn't read the story.

Art, words and ideas are equally important in comic books and strips.

It's job fulfilled, I clicked off the comics light bulb, went to bed, pulled the cover over my head and cried myself to sleep.

I dreamed of Spanish omelets.

Hombre Grande/40 pgs, from El Wendigo/art and story by David Mazzucchelli. Recommended for interested hombres. For information, send a double stamped, self-addressed envelope to: El Wendigo, Apartado de Correos, 461 Gijon/Asturias, Spain, 8-5351963.

The Disney Afternoon #9

The Disney Afternoon #9/22 pgs., $1.50, Marvel Comics/various artists, writers/available at newsstands, comics shops and by mail.

Comics aren't just for kids anymore. Kids have suffered because of that, and there's a kid in all of us.

Thankfully (all kidding aside) the handful of titles for children has just grown larger, and the cliches in The Disney Afternoon aren't as awful as mine!

Cliches are in the eye of the experienced, and this collection of favorite Disney characters is meant for inexperienced readers who will find Darkwing Duck, Chip 'n Dale and Goofy familiar adventurers from television.

Chip and Dale open the comic with "In Haunted Mouses", a story frightening without being violent. As "The Rescue Rangers", the chipmunks solve the mystery of a spooky house despite Dale's silly antics being mistaken for things that go bump in the night.

Goofy, Pete, Max and PJ saddle up for excitement at a dude ranch in "Woolly Bully". Goofy, the dog!, saves the day by ending up the butt of his own yoke.

Ahuk, ahuk, ahuk!

The Disney Afternoon is rounded out by a brief Darkwing Duck outing, and a fun-filled two pages of readers' letters.

Obviously, this title won't interest adults (except for those indulging in the secret, guilty pleasure of Saturday morning television cartoons). So, what recommends it to the adult readers of Suspended Animation?

These simple tales are well written and drawn. Loaded with fun, they're a perfect introduction not only to comic books, but to the excitement of reading.

Recommended for very young children and for the adults who love to read to them.

Miniview: The Realm #'s 8-13 [Caliber Press] The excitement of molasses pouring on an epic scale; several humans are transported to a realm where false anatomy is accented by fake lighting as elves and other things battle.

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