Daredevil Message Board
The Board Without Fear!
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 


DD Book Club - Baby Boom

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Daredevil Message Board Forum Index -> The comics
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
Mike Murdock
Lowlife


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1437

PostPosted: Sun May 17, 2020 8:06 am    Post subject: DD Book Club - Baby Boom Reply with quote

Chronologically, we skipped this when we were doing Inferno. I wanted to double back and take care of it.

Dimetre, you accidentally already reviewed this story, so this should be easy for you Wink

Ann Nocenti actually talked about this story, although she didn't remember it very well. She actually thought it was a Spider-Man story. This was before Ditko passed away, but it's worth a listen.

[url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zvQtwceDILI]It can be found here[/ul]

Daredevil Vol. 1 #264 - Baby Boom

Quote:
Regular artist John Romita Jr. unavailable to pencil this issue the INFERNO storyline was put on hold. So writer Ann Nocenti came up with this off beat issue. It chronology takes place before INFERNO.


Due 5/24
_________________
Matt Murdock's cooler twin brother

Not sure what to read next? Check out the Book Club for some ideas!

I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!
Thomas More - A Man for All Seasons
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Dimetre
Parts of a Hole


Joined: 16 Feb 2006
Posts: 1177
Location: Toronto

PostPosted: Sun May 17, 2020 3:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I copied and pasted my accidental early review from "The Children Are Watching You" thread.

This just isn't a good issue, and that's bizarre to me because Ann Nocenti was doing some of her best writing around this time. But it's clear to me that she just tossed this story off. She clearly didn't care too much.

That is made even more of a shame because this is the only issue of Daredevil that legendary comic book artist Steve Ditko drew. His style may be better suited to the 60s, but I think he did a very good job. Manley and Williamson supported him well with their inking.

In tiny type above the opening splash page we get this:

Quote:
Mighty Marvel Message: With regular artist John Romita Jr. unavailable to pencil this issue due to his impending wedding (congrats Johnny) we decided to put our awesome INFERNO storyline on hold for a month. Then we asked writer Ann Nocenti to come up with a special off-beat issue whose chronology placement, for you timekeepers, would be sometime in the very recent past. Artist Steve Ditko stepped into the art chores -- and voila! Hope you like it as much as we do. And remember -- Next month... INFERNO returns!


Nocenti, as always, attempts to weave a social theme through the issue's length -- this one concerns dismissal of old ways. The Owl is derided throughout the issue as yesterday's man, a relic of the past. He doesn't get respect until he jumps out of a helicopter and glides away.

But that brings me to a big criticism. When this issue opens I had no idea where Owl and the Bomber gang were. I thought perhaps they were on a New York subway train. It wasn't until the Owl made that jump that it was clear they were on a helicopter. It's pretty bad when neither a writer nor an artist can be bothered to tell the reader the setting of a scene.

I enjoyed the Owl's musings when he's alone with his namesake bird, but the scene that follows is again problematic. We get a homeless man with this baby he's taking care of. He has grown attached to the kid, and it seems that the kid has grown attached in return. That's nice enough and I felt for the guy, but Ditko drew him wearing a pretty nice dress shirt, and colourist Max Scheele gave it a very clean white look. Even the pants look pressed. Nocenti doesn't give either him or the baby a name, and there was no good reason for the guy to put the kid in the bag, other than to get the plot moving. It's just too hard for me to believe that a paper bag from a grocery store would be strong enough to hold a baby who's old enough to have grown a thick head of dark hair. The kid would easily kick or punch his way out of the bag in no time at all.

Also, we know for sure that the bag the guy put the baby in was one of the Bomber's explosive bags. Why doesn't it blow up? We see many other paper bags explode. But the bag containing the baby never explodes. It seems like the member of the Cannibals who took that bag never bothered looking inside, and never noticed that instead of containing cocaine, it contained a baby. And when the Cannibal member left the bag alone, the baby never crawled out. It's too much to believe.

It's also strange that every time Daredevil encounters the homeless man, he wonders who he is, but he doesn't confront him. When he finally does near the end of the story, he gets nothing out of him and just leaves. But somehow, when he finds the baby, he somehow knows that the homeless guy was looking for him. It makes no sense. And when he does return the baby to the homeless guy, he says that he should report him, but the homeless guy cuts him off and asks him not to. After all, he loves the baby and he's a good father. Daredevil responds, "Okay okay. But I'm going to keep an eye on you two -- and report this to the authorities." The homeless guy happily walks away with the baby, even though he just asked Daredevil not to report him to the authorities, which Daredevil just told him he's going to do. Was this written in one minute? Did editor Ralph Macchio not bother to proofread this?

If I have anything nice to say about this issue, it's that the Owl is somewhat empathetic. He's a class act compared to the Bombers, and you can kind of get with his scheme to bilk a bunch of cocaine dealers out of their money. However, it's weird that the Owl starts to muse aloud that perhaps the young gangsters should shove older people like him and Daredevil aside someday. There's no reason shown for him to have a change of heart like that, and nothing comes of it anyway.

But I'll always enjoy the way the late Ditko drew action. He was one of the best at it. His figures are malleable. The way they bend and move from panel to panel should be studied by anyone interested in the comics medium. This fight between Daredevil and the Owl doesn't rise to Ditko's previous heights like Spidey versus the Green Goblin or Doctor Strange versus Dormammu, but it's a good one.

The only reason I'm giving this issue a passing grade is because it's the only Daredevil issue drawn by Steve Ditko (although he did draw Matt in Amazing Spider-Man #16), and the inking by Manley and Williamson is good. However nobody else involved showed any effort -- not Nocenti, not Macchio, no one, and that's really too bad.

Three out of five.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Mike Murdock
Lowlife


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1437

PostPosted: Mon May 18, 2020 8:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This issue starts off so weird it's hard to describe. I can't remember the last time The Owl had been used. He is somewhat of a has-been villain, if you think about it. But the goons he's hired mocking him is still pretty surreal. I have to wonder if Ditko just drew what he wanted and Nocenti tried to figure it out. In some ways, it feels like the Owl could be a metaphor for Ditko because he's old school in a world that's passed him by.

The homeless guy with the baby is from another story first, I think. I want to say Ground Zero, but I could be wrong. It's good to see such a throwaway character return, I guess. I have to say, Nocenti's interview expresses the confusion I feel and how she probably felt if this story was a metaphor for anything. That being said, it feels like it has to represent something or else it would just be an acid trip. The way the story moves, there's basically no point of view character as Daredevil and the homeless guy run back and forth looking at bags. That being said, Ditko's art has a very good flow to it, especially in the action scenes.

Three Stars. It's a fill-in story that feels like exactly that. It's hard to get excited about it. The art is enjoyable and I like the homeless guy reappearing.
_________________
Matt Murdock's cooler twin brother

Not sure what to read next? Check out the Book Club for some ideas!

I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!
Thomas More - A Man for All Seasons
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Dimetre
Parts of a Hole


Joined: 16 Feb 2006
Posts: 1177
Location: Toronto

PostPosted: Mon May 18, 2020 10:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mike Murdock wrote:
I have to say, Nocenti's interview expresses the confusion I feel and how she probably felt if this story was a metaphor for anything. That being said, it feels like it has to represent something or else it would just be an acid trip. The way the story moves, there's basically no point of view character as Daredevil and the homeless guy run back and forth looking at bags. That being said, Ditko's art has a very good flow to it, especially in the action scenes.

I just watched that video, and if the baby in the bag represents socialism somehow, I can't see how. Weird. A lot of time has passed, and she's obviously not remembering everything about the comic clearly, so we may never figure out what Ditko intended.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Mike Murdock
Lowlife


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1437

PostPosted: Tue May 19, 2020 6:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's true. There seemed to be some kind of thing about wishes, desires, or expectations going on with the bum's story. And maybe it had to do with failed expectations? He kept looking in the bag to see a baby and it blew up in his face? Yeah, I have no idea. Obviously, she's misremembering because she said it was a Spider-Man story (I doubt she did two Ditko-related baby bomb stories in her Marvel career), so she isn't the best source here. I can't say I blame her for not remembering this story correctly.
_________________
Matt Murdock's cooler twin brother

Not sure what to read next? Check out the Book Club for some ideas!

I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!
Thomas More - A Man for All Seasons
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Pete
Fall From Grace


Joined: 29 Jul 2004
Posts: 417
Location: Liverpool, UK

PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dimetre wrote:

That is made even more of a shame because this is the only issue of Daredevil that legendary comic book artist Steve Ditko drew. His style may be better suited to the 60s, but I think he did a very good job. Manley and Williamson supported him well with their inking.


Ditko actually drew another DD issue, a fill in written by Michael Fleisher early on during the original Miller run (Requiem For A Pug, #162, Jan 1980).

I agree that Ditko was at his peak in the '60's, yet it was always a treat seeing any new work by a guy who helped define the modern day superhero comic book, even if in this case Fleisher's story was instantly forgettable. Unfortunately the whole thing came across as nothing more than an annoying interruption, with the McKenzie/Miller run already beginning to show signs of something really special in a book that was still published bi-monthly - an even longer wait for the main attraction!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Dimetre
Parts of a Hole


Joined: 16 Feb 2006
Posts: 1177
Location: Toronto

PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 7:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pete wrote:
Ditko actually drew another DD issue, a fill in written by Michael Fleisher early on during the original Miller run (Requiem For A Pug, #162, Jan 1980).

Wow. I'm surprised that slipped by me!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Daredevil Message Board Forum Index -> The comics All times are GMT - 4 Hours
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Powered by phpBB © phpBB Group