Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Umbrella Academy Dallas - - best comic of the year

The first volume of Umbrella Academy - - Apocalypse Suite was excellent. Volume 2, which is named Dallas, is even better. If you haven't tried Umbrella Academy yet, think of it as the X-Men plotted by Mignola. Or as Grant Morrison has said, "It's the X-Men for cool people." I don't want to say any more about the story because it would be a shame to ruin any of the surprises. But you can read the first five pages of the story here - - the team fights the Abraham Lincoln monument.

I have the limited edition hardcover, so let me tell you what that version includes. First, let me say that I'm generally not a big fan of limited edition hardcovers. In my experience most trade paperbacks hold up great through multiple readings. And I couldn't care less if what I own is "limited." In fact, I've only ever bought one limited edition that I was satisfied with - - Kingdom Come. (By comparison, the Earth X limited edition was a tremendous disappointment.)

So anyway, the Dallas limited edition. Here's what you get: it's oversized, so the pages are huge and really show off the art; the pages themselves are remarkably thick; and there's a relatively uninspiring special illustration with overlay by Gabriel Ba. None of that's probably worth the extra price. But you also get a long concept art section featuring character designs and rejected covers. And the real revelation is that Gerard Way is not only a gifted writer, but he's also a fantastic artist. Here's his design for one of the new characters featured in Dallas:

All in all, I'd say the limited edition is only for diehard Umbrella Academy fans. You can order it for 37% off at Amazon. But anyone else who likes comics should order the paperback immediately. It's 33% off at Amazon.

All of this gives me a good excuse to feature some Umbrella Academy oddities:

Umbrella Academy movie poster. (Part of a set of fake movie posters.)

Hazel and Cha Cha cosplay.

White Violin cosplay.

The Rumor cosplay.

Plush Hazel and Cha Cha and Seance.

Hazel and Cha Cha shoes.

Umbrella Academy paper toys.

Umbrella Academy custom action figures by Rust This World.

Umbrella Academy custom action figures by lemondrop.

And finally, did I mention that the author photograph of Gerard Way that graces the end of the book features him and his wife Lyn-Z reenacting JFK's assassination?

*Previously: Playmobil toys used to reenact JFK's assassination.

*Buy Umbrella Academy toys at eBay.