Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Liberator, Vol. 1: Rage Ignition by Matt Miner (2014)


I'm happy I purchased this book back when it came out; the message is spot-on and it's the kind of work I really want to support.

The art is mostly great.  I especially love how Damon is drawn.  If I was much younger I'm sure I'd want to "ship" him with someone (I mean, I'm surely too old for that now, right!) but there's not really anyone to do that with in this comic, unless I did hetero-shipping, which, you know, like, ew.

Kidding.

I'm in that mode because this is definitely a book geared to the younger set.  The young teen set.  I would have loved something like this as a kid.  Not because it's great storytelling (because it's not), but because it would satisfy my own rage.  Rage is the theme of the book.  Rage is not really explored, but it is the theme.  It's presented, and very briefly, a character or two thinks about the implications of it.  But it would be an overstatement to say it is explored.

Bits of plot are thrown in to justify (and this leads to watering down) the actions of the characters.  Do the actions need justification?  Maybe not.  But for some reason Matt Miner thought it important to add sexual abuse to the past relationship of a fur-farm overlord and our hero, which allows for a bit of moralizing of "are you doing it for the animals or are you doing it for yourself?"

See, I know this is for kids, and possibly the kids who haven't had much experience in life at ALL, because life isn't compartmentalized like that.  The argument is false.  If you care deeply about animal rights and how they are treated, then anything you do on their behalf is also something you're doing for yourself.  It's not exactly healthy to somehow slice those things in half.

And idealism in itself isn't a reasonable justification for anything.  You separate your ideals from your heart and you're on the path to a happy dystopia, whatever the parallel would be to oligarchy, but with treatises leading the way instead of corporations and profit.

I'm making this too complicated, of course.  The story is simplistic and, toward the end, rushed.  We hit "the end" after big revelations are thrown at us and never developed.  The bad guys are ridiculous, exaggerated caricatures of demonic terror.  The characters soapbox a lot but never develop much beyond that.  I commend the message; I'm there with the creators here.  But I can't bring myself to inflate my review just because I share an ideology. 

PS: this edition comes with bonus features, like any good trade paperback: cover gallery, "pin-ups," some good (some not good) bonus stories from different creators, articles about different action groups.

PSS: I always love to see projects of the heart see the light of day because of Kickstarter and other similar programs.

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