Monday, July 09, 2007

THE BLACK DIAMOND AiT/Planet Lar Comics, 2007

This is pissing me off - I can't seem to write titles for my blog posts. No idea why - I think Blogger is punishing me for some transgression. I was kidding about going to Wordpress, OK, Blogger? Please give me my titles back. I'll buy you a cookie! Nice Blogger want a cookie? UPDATE: Fixed it! Thanks Blogger, here's a cookie. Good boy.

The Black Diamond: why didn't I think of that, damn it? 'Cause AiT/Planet Lar's two-fisted madman Larry Young thought of it first, that's why.

Kicking off High Concept Week, I offer you The Black Diamond, a comic book about Dr. Don, a charming dentist (or is he an orthodontist?) on the West Coast whose wife has been kidnapped by some chatty goons on the East Coast. Dr. Don has to get to her - stat - and since nobody much flies anymore on account of the terrorists, he's got one option: the motherfuckin' Black Diamond, an eight-lane elevated transcontinental super-highway where speed rules.

That's the basic idea. Up on the Black Diamond, an entire sub-culture of 'jackers and mechanics and black marketeers and oil warlords has sprung up, and the military wants to close that shit down. That's why Dr. Don's wife has been kidnapped. You see --

Ahh, you should just read the damn thing.

This is AiT/Planet Lar's first color book, and artist John (Gun Theory) Proctor makes the most of it. His photo-referenced art is suffused with vivid colors and warm sunset glows that makes the line work really pop. That shit is pretty.

Young's script is chatty and idiosyncratic, full of dialogue that has nothing to do with the plot but is fun to read anyway. The story is built around an action movie premise, yet the action seems sort of peripheral. I can't tell if Young is doing this by design, leading us up to a huge blow-out death race at the end of the six issues, or if The Black Diamond is a post-modern adventure that is sort of thumbing its nose at genre conventions. To me, that's kind of refreshing - although truth be told, I'm gonna be pissed if there isn't some car-nage before this story screeches to a halt.

My one complaint about The Black Diamond is the format - it's paced in such a way that I think it would play better as a graphic novel rather than a monthly. I'll probably end up getting the trade, as well, so I guess it doesn't matter.

I'm giving The Black Diamond a thumbs up - it's a high concept comic book served up with style and what's more, you can pick it up at your local comic book store right now. Yes, I'm actually talking about a comic that was published within the past ten years. Shocking, I know.

On an unrelated note: Larry and Mimi from Ait/Planet Lar had a baby boy recently, so I have to throw in a F*&% Yeah and a congratulations for the happy parents. Raising a kid in today's crazy-ass world is no easy task, but raising a little bad-ass kid? That's High Concept indeed.

19 comments:

nightfly said...

Re: titles - having the same problem myself. Eventually, I just hit Tab over and over, moving the cursor from the text field through the buttons, the URL field on the browser, and then finally to the title box. Pain in the patoot, to be sure, but it did work.

Kon said...

Dave, from which film is that Chow Yun Fat picture?

Bully said...

Dave, I think the Title problem is fixed, but if it isn't:

Hold the cursor over the middle of the title field and SLOWLY move the mosue up. About 1/4 of an inch above where you'd expect it, the arrow turns into a text entry cursor, and you can click and start typing from there. You can go back and edit a title into any that are missing using this, too.

By the way, that swearin' lion needs his own blog to join the Legion of Stuffed Animal Bloggers.

Rasselas said...

Inspector Tequila #1!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Rock and roll!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sorry. I had a late lunch.

JamesF said...

For the title (in case the other 15 methods don't work) you can try what I do, go to the Edit HTML tab, put the cursor in the text field for changing the post test and Shift-Tab back to the title. Then use the arrow keys to move around.

Joshua said...

You need to put your cursor above the title box. It's still there, but it's not reading the mouse position right. Just move up from the title box a little bit and you will find the right place to click.

Tom said...

regarding titles, fyi, in my RSS reader your first line appeared as

"This is pissing me off - I can't seem to write tit..."

So, as far as titles go... "tit" isn't a bad hook.

Ted said...

RE: Kon

That's a pic from "Hard-Boiled," the last movie Chow Yun-Fat made with John Woo and the last film Woo made in Hong Kong before coming over here. That was 1992. Yun-Fat would work over there for another three years, until making "Peace Hotel."

Hard-Boiled fuckin' rules, incidentally.

Mimi said...

Thanks for the warm wishes, Dave!

Larry says he wrote The Black Diamond for you.

Shelly said...

Glad to know I'm not the only one with title problems.

Anonymous said...

so the Black Diamond is a knock off of Spain's Highway Zero in his subvert (Trashman) comics? i liked spain's version of the superhighway crazy road warrior action a tad better...if you haven't read it, it's neat!

as always, great post.

Chris said...

So people don't fly because of terrorists, but they're happy to deal with carjackers and warlords on the motorway?

Ginger Yellow

Jeff Rients said...

Am I the only one who thinkg Ait/Planet Lar is a terribly clunky name?

Josh said...

You know what else is a great high concept... ordering your very own ninja through the mail.

Someone should write a book about that...

Travis said...

No, I think people would rather deal with the warlords and carjackers than the TSA, is the real thing.

Still, sounds ginchy to me.

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