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Comic book reading over the years has become synonymous with words like nerd, virgin, or my personal favorite ‘get away from me or die geek’. I am here to tell everyone who has been brainwashed that comic books have become a medium for beautiful artwork as well as deep intellectual story telling. I’m not saying the cliche superhero stories aren’t still the dominant force behind the industry or that there isn’t still an overwhelming amount of piss poor artwork out there, but I am going to give you a list of comic books that I think you should give a chance before you go pushing that geek who reads Batman into the lockers. A read through of anyone of the seven books I am about to talk about will either have you considering comics as a regular form of reading, or at the very least respecting the genre.

WARNING: IF YOU ARE A V FOR VENDETTA/WATCHMEN FANBOY AND EXPECT TO SEE THEM ON THIS LIST THEN BE WARNED, THEY’RE NOT. (not because I don’t love or enjoy them, but simply because they are too well known already)

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Nick Hornby and Ben Folds are releasing an album in September in a collaborative effort that they’re entitling Lonely Avenue. Hornby is a notable (read: old) British author with two novels already adopted to the silver screen (1992’s Fever Pitch and 1995’s High Fidelity). The idea came from a dinner the two had sometime in 2009. Hornby had the idea of writing lyrics for the right artist to translate into amazing music. Judging by the first single that was released the other day, Hornby chose the right guy.

Ageless

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Everybody's like everybody else and everybody's different from everybody else.

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“Imperial Bedrooms” has to be the ultimate Bret Easton Ellis novel. No, there is no satire present because a plot-driven noir and uber-violent spectacles imitating “American Psycho” and “Glamorama” are more important. Yes, everyone’s still rich and you’re going to hate all of them. No, he doesn’t make any nuanced list or make Huey Lewis and the News references.

Ellis made it a running theme of his interviews regarding the publication to basically disown “Less Than Zero” and deprecate himself by saying how uninteresting he is in comparison to this image readers have of him. Screw that. He loves it, and “Imperial Bedrooms” is a response to that. Interpretations that this novel isn’t as much a sequel as a career retrospective are absolutely correct. As someone who’s read through his chronology (for the most part) the latest installment is pure Meta. The humor here is absent in text only.

I came to this conclusion after watching the film adaptation of “The Informers”, his short story collection. Watching this is like being a resident of Mogadishu- it really sucks. It’s humorless and vapid. It is the work of someone who only concentrated on the glossy, glamorous elements of Ellis’s 1980s Los Angeles. These people have, in effect, become his target audience. They love celebrity, status and the novel value the 80s holds without irony- mostly on par with Ellis. Mostly. They’ve grown up appreciating the things Ellis spent his life scrutinizing. And now they have a new read as cool, as sleek as anything he’s ever written.

I didn’t like this novel at first. Now I love it. Congratulations, Bret. You’ve succeeded in mocking your audience.

Marc

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