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05 December 2012

Into the Supercontext part 14: Absolute Vertigo

(Image stolen from DC database.)

Absolute Vertigo
A 1995 DC Comics Vertigo anthology comic edited by Karen Berger.
Cover art by Glenn Fabry, Richard Case and Phil Winslade. 
Featuring comics from a whole bunch of people including a King Mob story by Grant Morrison and Duncan Fedrego. 

Now that we are through the first year of The Invisibles, let's take a stroll around the scenic view of the Vertigo comics imprint and look at this Absolute Vertigo thing.  This comic is basically just a preview book of new and exciting comics that no one had ever herd of yet like Preacher, and Ghostdancing.  (The first ever printed appearance of Preacher for those keeping score.)  It is the kind of thing  Marvel often does for free now.  But DC charged 99 cents and the main selling point was that it included a new Invisibles comic.

The Invisibles comic in question is a short King Mob story.  This is a solo story and gives us a look at what a crazy time traveling super spy assassin like King Mob does when not on some mission with the team.  Mob receives a weird fetish doll in an Invisibles drop box.  So, naturally, he takes it to a fetish shop to see what's up.  He meets up with a nice dominatrix lady named Joni.  She examines the doll.  Turns out that it is a kind of voodoo doll bomb and if Mob does not figure out the correct sigil to reverse it, the thing will kill him.  This plot really just serves as and excuse for Duncan Fegredo to draw Mob driving around looking bad ass in that super trashy Duncan Fegredo style.  So very 90s cyber punk.  And a lot of fun to look at here years removed.

Mob seems some raving conservative blow hard on TV ranting about controlling the masses.  He realized it was the same guy that dominatrix Joni had been beating earlier.  The hex was put on him by Joni for the dirty rich white dude.  Oh, dirty rich white dudes are the worst?  Realizing the betrayal, Mob returns to the fetish shop and murderates Joni.  There on the wall in a patter of her blood he sees the reverse sigil he had been looking for.  He puts the sigil on Joni's head and reversed the hex back on the dirty rich white dude.  Justice!  Horrible, bloody, fetish shop justice.

This is as good a time as any to mention this comic's editor Karen Berger as a driving force behind Vertigo comics and therefore, at least in some way, The Invisibles.  It was recently announced that Berger is leaving the Vertigo brand.  This write up at The Beat is worth a look.  Although, I argue against the idea that Vertigo is unnecessary now.  Maybe it is not necessary to comics but I do think it is necessary to DC/Time Warner comics.  They still need a place for creator owned comics because if they don't have one, their top talent will place their creator owned books elsewhere.  And while DC/Time Warner may not care about their silly little creator owned comics I think they should care about their top talent becoming happier at a different publisher.

Speaking of which, I hear that young upstart writer Grant Morrison has a new comic at Image these days.

Your best pal ever,

Shannon Smith

p.s. Say you want a leader but you can't seem to make up your mind. I think you'd better close it and let me guide you to my twitter feed.
p.p.s. Let's pretend we went to high school together on facebook.
p.p.p.s. Google + is another place you can read the same thing I posted here.
p.p.p.p.s. I'll tumblr for ya.
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