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Wait, What? Ep. 32.1: (Jason) Aaron & Ahmed

Jeff Lester


So I did my best to wait until Hibbs posted the shipping list, but I can just tell that no matter when I set this thing to post, he’s going to write something that will take up the whole homepage five minutes later…which is certainly his prerogative, and typically preferred.

But I did want to tell you that, should you be interested, the first part of Episode 32 is up on iTunes and in it Graeme and I talk Punisher Max #11, Aaron & Ahmed, Wolverine #6, the last ten or so issues of Captain America, James Robinson’s two Jimmy Olsen Specials from the other year, and a bunch of other stuff. Should you choose, you can listen to it here:

Wait, What? Ep. 32.1: (Jason) Aaron and Ahmed

Next installment should be up in a day or so and, as always, we hope you enjoy!

8 Responses to “ Wait, What? Ep. 32.1: (Jason) Aaron & Ahmed ”

  1. Great episode
    But every once in a while it would be great to hear a glowing review of something.

  2. Re: Brubaker – I almost think at this point in his mainstream career his technical skill at crafting a single issue of a comic is such that it’s almost automatic in terms of structure and story beats and an ending cliffhanger and so on. To the point that if you’ve read enough Cap or whatever other Brub, there is a sameness to it that makes it a bit dull as a single issue experience. I didn’t put this together until listening to your discussion, but I figure this is the reason that Cap is a title I’ve seriously thought about dropping for a ridiculously long time: OK, I’ll wait until the #600 anniversary, wait, Gene Colan’s drawing an issue (awesome!) alright I’ll check out Reborn but that’s it, OK now Butch Guice is drawing it & throwing in Steranko riffs, one more arc, and so on. I had already resigned myself to the idea that I must enjoy it to keep making these excuses, even if it’s usually the last thing I read out of my “buy pile” (and occasionally I forget & get around to it a week or 2 later). So now I know I need to let a whole arc build up or switch to trades and then dive in. Thanks Graeme & Jeff!
    You made Stitches sound pretty amazing as well, and I’m sorry Aaron & Achmed flubbed the ending because your plot description made it sound like something I wanted to pick up.

  3. wow that image is totally appropriate for a public website.

  4. Farrel,

    Listening to the podcast gives the image a context. The guys discuss a technique Aaron employs to cut from a fight and return to an image for comedic effect. Admittedly it’s a Punisher MAX comedic effect but there you have it. Steve Dillon’s art is pretty perfect for this type of thing (take that how you like because it’s also perfect for showing close relationships with partially hollowed out pumpkins if I recall…).

    At any rate, I’m certainly sorry for you if you were offended. Live and let live, turn the channel, create a tightly regulated personalized internet that lives up to each individual moral code on that given day?

    I think it’s also important to say that while Graeme may not have “liked” or had critical issues with the last half of or third of Aaron & Achmed that the point of criticism as such is to 1) make us aware of the existence of something and 2) come to some type of reasoned and formed judgement on that something. It’s Graeme’s judgement and while his, Jeff’s, & my taste seem to overlap a good amount of the time there are always outliers and leaps of faith I’ve taken that have been really rewarding. It made me think about it enough to write it down – search the library catalog etc. So if you think you’d even remotely enjoy it or have the time for it…you never know until you know. Ya know?

  5. I can almost guarantee Jeff that reading the entirety of Aaron’s Punisher and not just #11 will make you love it again.

    Also you really think a guy who wrote that scene with the vomit is shying away from things?

  6. Farrel: Hey, sorry about that–although appropriate to the stuff being discussed on the podcast (as J_Smitty points out), I did spend a few minutes wondering whether it was appropriate generally. Considering I found the image searching on Google with the safesearch turned to “strict,” I figured that would count as being generally acceptable for standard Internet use.

    So, although I’m sure you’d still disagree with my judgment call, maybe it will help you to know that I did actually try to make one?

    Rick: Yeah, I’ll definitely check out the whole arc and I think that’s a very good point I probably should’ve kept in mind.

    As for the vomit scene and shying away from things–absolutely! There’s a difference between bodily functions and physical intimacy, physical violence and emotional violence, etc., etc. Just because someone is super-comfortable lighting their own farts on fire (or showing it in a comic book) that doesn’t mean they’re going to be great at, I dunno, writing about death.

    Although it’s probably a necessity of the pacing, I feel like more often than not Aaron cuts away from the fight scene stuff too quickly for my taste. Maybe that makes me a vulgarian, but when you’re reading books like Wolverine or The Punisher, you’d think there wouldn’t be quite so many judicious cut-aways (in the editing sense) as there are.

    Finally, as much as I snickered with glee at the vomit scene, didn’t it seem…unrealistic to you? Maybe the rest of the arc sets this up but normally talking to Ralph on the big white phone involves a certain loss of muscle control and semi-involuntary muscular contractions. Thinking about it for more than 30 secs, it would’ve been a great idea that would’ve gotten Bullseye a knife in his neck.

    (Hopefully, this will be *the* “when Superman uses his heat vision while disguised as Clark Kent, why doesn’t it melt his glasses?” of 2011.)

  7. I haven’t read a lot of Aaron’s superhero work, but I know for Scalped (which I read in trade regularly), he doesn’t always pull the punch. For example, there’s a great 4-page scene in issue three where protagonist Dashiell Bad Horse lays waste to some gangster types. It plays out each gangsters death vividly and feels very satisfying (to me at least). Maybe Aaron just has issues with the ridiculous over-the-top fights required of superhero comics? Maybe he’s not as comfortable with the artists he works with on those?

    By the way, you should really give Scalped a read if you haven’t. Well-crafted with art that reminds me of Eduardo Risso on 100 Bullets in that it’s perfect in evoking the mood and shifts slightly to do so as the story demands.

  8. James Woodward summed up my feelings on Cap better than I could. I keep thinking of leaving then they whisper “ Chris Samnee is doing some work in it shortly” and “that Chaykin fella too” and I close the door and sit down again.

    Actually I feel somewhat chastened by your discussion of Cap. As I don’t get to read it in big chunks and maybe it goes down smoother like that. Then again it isn’t published in big chunks initially is it? Oh, Cap have I taken you for granted? Wrap your star spangled arms around me, you big lug, I’m still here aint I?

    I have to say I really enjoy Aaron’s work; it’s entertaining and sometimes more than that. But his increased workload seems to be having an effect. I can’t help but notice a reliance on basing stuff on movies (particularly ‘70s ones. Good choice.) creeping in to the extent that it’s dominating the work. Also that WOLVERINE issue just amounted to some people talking at the bottom of some steps while Wolverine stood at the top stabbing himself obliviously. To do that for 22 pages and still entertain is, well, it’s something. SCALPED is great but R M Guera is the real star of the show there for me. Delightful stuff!

    My 5 year old son saw that picture of Bullseye and asked me why that bald man was covered in blood. So I told him about Frank and that day in the park. I told him of men and their duties to their families. I told him of the price of failure of said duties and I told him most of all (yes this most of all) about the dreadful cost of revenge. No, I just said “Because he’s been fighting and people get hurt when they fight. What a silly man!” and then we drew some pictures of spaceships.

    Thanks as ever for the podcast, gentlemen.

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