Episode 142, “Loss”

Wolverine #3, November 1982
Written by Chris Claremont, Pencils by Frank Miller, Inks by Josef Rubinstein, Lettered by Tom Orzechowski, Colors by Glynis Wein, Edited by Louise Jones, Editor-In-Chief Jim Shooter.

Rated M – For Miller!

In Which We Find That Ninja Is One of The More Overlooked Positions In The Hospitality Industry, That There Are Very Few Times Appropriate For Calling Out Your Ex’s Name And After Killing Five Ninjas Is Still Not It, And That When The Mangled Corpses Are All Aligned Along The Garden Rake Tracks That Is Actually Maximum Zen!

Can’t Get Enough Summer In Our Spectacular! Literally! We Are Going To Say The End Of September Still Counts!

Zack Snyder and Frank Miller at the 300 Premiere in 2007. Frank Miller began his Hollywood journey with Robocop II in 1988, where he learned that “A screenwriter is much like being a fire hydrant with a bunch of dogs lined up around it.” After a couple of years he ran back to the comics, producing a bunch of acclaimed works that would eventually lead him right back into Hollwood’s tender arms.
[Photo by Lester Cohen/WireImage.com]

Frank Miller’s Sin City began as a serialized comic within the Dark Horse Presents anthology in 1990, but soon ballooned into its own phenomena, filling out seven collected editions over the next decade. In Sin City, Frank Miller was finally able to embrace his first love, the gritty detective noir that was the base for so much of his other work. The above panels come from his 1997 Family Values graphic novel.

Sin City’s art style is all about light and shadows, shapes and layout, with cartoonish characters often defined in negatives. While almost entirely in black and white, Miller would occasionally employ a single color to really make a character pop, like in the above panel from 1996’s That Yellow Bastard.

The 1990s were a time for several fruitful collaborations. Frank Miller worked with Geof Darrow on both Hard Boiled (shown directly above and below) and The Big Guy and Rusty the Boy Robot. Geof Darrow is known for his intricate and highly detailed art, making every page a veritable Where’s Waldo of searching for whatever bizarre, grotesque, or downright weird material Darrow has scattered around.

Combined with Geof Darrow’s frantic art, Miller continued to put forth his gritty vision of worlds gone bad, where only his bad-ass, hyper violent creations can save it. Or maybe kill it.

Frank Miller’s other significant collaboration of this time period was with Dave Gibbons of Watchmen-fame. Here Frank Miller presents us with an African-American woman as his unstoppable protagonist, Martha Washington. It is another dystopian future that only his hero can save, this time with a more distinctly military bent. While less acclaimed than some of his other works, the Martha Washington series (which began with Give Me Liberty in 1990) sold very well and was a large financial success for Dark Horse Comics.

In 1998, Frank Miller came out with his historically-based tale of the Battle of Thermopylae, where 300 Spartans held off the seemingly infinite army of the Persians. 300, as it was titled, was an immediate financial and critical success and won 3 Eisner awards the following year.
300 is all double page spreads, which Miller felt he needed to capture the size and scope of the ancient army combat he wished to depict. Of arguably equal importance was the distinct, de-saturated color palette employed by Lynn Varley.
With the visual and artistic success of 300, Hollywood came sniffing back around. Having learned some lessons from his first foray into the film industry morass, Miller looked for pitches that would maintain his original artistic vision. He found a suitable partner in Zack Snyder, whose 300 maintained the distinctive desaturated look and tried to reconstruct each panel as a shot in the movie. A movie that went on to make nearly half a billion dollars. Hollywood loves a comeback story.

Guess who?
Let me guess… Mariko? And shirtless? Everything’s coming up Logan!
Ugggh, now I have to call a glazier.
Ride the new Japanese Supertrain: The Tangled Body Express! It loses something in translation.
St. Sebastian on a field of red, early Renaissance. We will start the auction at $75,000.
Got the glazier on speed dial. The windows in this town are so shattery.
See, they did parkour in the 80’s.
OH FOR F–K’S SAKE! I’m never going to get a glass appointment now!
A clear violation of Spider-man’s copyright.
No matter how fast Wolverine skated, he always ended up with the blades in the wrong place.
Does anyone else see this as a really dirty image? The placement of the “MAN” caption, the giant hole… Fine! I guess that just makes me the pervert!

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