Page 45 Review by Jonathan
Some girls are troublesome. Some girls are just plain trouble. And some girls are... SUPER TROUBLE.
Back in the day, no visit to Page 45 from yours truly would be complete without a plaintive query to whichever delightful denizen was behind the counter as to whether Paul Pope had released any more THB. In the end Mark just used to chuckle whilst stroking his beard rather than proffering a rejoinder, while Stephen merely arched an eyebrow temporarily dislodging another ceiling tile. And now, in turn, I also find myself just gently shaking my head with the most faintly wry of grins present on my mug, whenever someone enquires the same of me.
Pope, more than possibly any other creator for me, is the one who I simply wish was more prolific. There is absolutely nothing he has done which I have not delightedly devoured from SIN TITULO, THE BALLARD OF DR. RICHARDSON, ESCAPO, HEAVY LIQUID, 100% to BATMAN YEAR 100 and of course dear old THB. And yet, when you look at the sum total of his output over the years, given just how long he has been on the scene since the very early nineties, it begs the question, why has he not done more? Its a delight then to pour over this veritable cornucopia of relatively early material from 1995-2001. Yes, certain parts of it have turned up elsewhere, or been reworked into other finished forms, but its a real treasure trove for Pope-heads. For those not familiar with his work, it also forms a perfect primer. I defy anyone to read this and not be amazed and astonished at the artistic talent and truly unique style he possesses. Not just that, he is a genuine wordsmith too, often laconic, frequently playful, always engaging. He has a real knack for pithy, punchy dialogue that combines with his beautiful visuals to produce something spectacular.
The publisher writes:
Young lovers Tubby and Vim want to escape escape the mistakes they've made, the lives they've lived, and the dirty city weighing them down. Their plan is simple: all they have to do is rip-off Tubby's pals, the One Tricks the toughest street gang in LA. If they pull it off, they're set for life. If not, their lives won't matter much anyway. What was going to be a smooth, straight-forward heist becomes a fast-paced battle to the death.
Need I say more? I dont think so, honestly; for me the man is a genius, and, joy and bliss, apparently there is a new full-length epic entitled BATTLING BOY due out October 2013. So... bated breath, yes, but holding breath, no. This is Paul Pope after all. Fingers crossed though. And, if there is just one comics wish I would like fulfilled, it is that he continues and completes THB. If I seriously thought I could get 24,999 other signatures to petition the White House to make it a Presidential edict I would do it. Come on Paul, you know it makes sense!