Aug 28, 2011

About Books Blog 48: Marvel 1602


Author: Neil Gaiman
Genre: Graphic Novel, Mystery, Science Fiction

Favorite Line

“But hope, like heroes, can prove hard to kill.”

Summary (from Goodreads)
All's not well in the Marvel Universe in the year 1602 as strange storms are brewing and strange new powers are emerging! Spider-Man, the X-Men, Nick Fury, Dr. Strange, Daredevil, Dr. Doom, Black Widow, Captain America, and more appear in the waning days of the reign of Queen Elizabeth. As the world begins to change and enter into a new age, Gaiman weaves a thrilling mystery. How and why are these Marvel stars appearing nearly 400 years before they're supposed to?

My Thoughts

If you like comics at all you are sure to love Marvel 1602 as much as I did. This graphic is an extreme what if story asking: “what would happen if you took well know Marvel Comic characters and set them back in Elizabethan times?” It is a very creative story indeed. I loved the new interpretations of the characters, and seeing how their stories inter-weaved.

The great thing about Marvel 1602 is that you don’t have to read every Marvel Comic in the universe to understand it. If it turns out that you don’t know who one or two of the characters were in the original comics it doesn’t effect the enjoyments of the story. Though I’d be surprised if everyone didn’t know more than a few of the characters in the Marvel Universe due to the amount of films made about them in recent years.

Even though I had read this before, I soon realized that I had forgotten the whole entire book. The reason I forgot it is that 1602 is a serious mystery and espionage story. The plot is enjoyably intricate. I liked that the tale brings in so many historical elements about was going on in the government in the time period. I felt that really grounded the story in realism while the not totally human characters were flying around. I personally think Marvel 1602 is awesome. It’s serious drama with a lighthearted quality, which is a pretty good mix if you ask me. Of course, it also has beautiful art by Andy Kubert and Richard Isanove which makes it all the more fun.

Facts I Found Interesting

Due to the success of 1602 Marvel has release three sequels, 1602: New World, 1602: Fantastic Four, and Spider Man: 1602. I totally did not know about the sequels. I need to get my hands on them soon.

For the art in Marvel 1602 a technique called “enhanced pencils.” In this technique the penciled pages are sent to the colorist instead of the inker first, this results in cleaner more elaborate lines. Click here to see the art from 1602.

As with most books you can find more facts on the inspiration behind the novel in the afterword of the book. Don’t you just love an afterword?

The Movie

Obviously there is no movie. Which is really sad because I would probably do a wacky happy dance if there was one. The story is so elaborate it would probably be difficult to do in a really nice way. Therefore I will just enjoy the fabulous art for now.

Music To Read By

As I did with American Gods I found myself drawn to Sun and Moon by The Bravery. I don’t know what it is about Neil Gaiman and The Bravery, but hey it works for me. I also listened to the album System by Seal. It’s a semi-dance album so that might seem weird. However, Seal dance music is different I suppose. It has more of a mood and deeper lyrics. For the playlist I decided to use not only songs from the albums I listened to, but songs from the soundtracks of the films that have been made about the Marvel characters in this book. It actually turned out to be a pretty shiny playlist.

Marvel 1602 Playlist

Believe(Moon Version) - The Bravery
System - Seal
Come On, Come In - Velvet Revolver
Chasing The Storm - Patrick Doyle
Bleed for Me - Saliva
Playing With Fire - John Ottman
Hero - Chad Kroeger and Josey Scott
Passage of Time - Alan Slivestri

That's all folks. See you all later. Keep it shiny!

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