It’s (Frank) Miller Time! (Part 3)

Harsh words, bro.  Although...they do speak to a central concept.

Harsh words, bro. Although…they do speak to a central concept.

“Courage isn’t the absence of fear…it’s the will to face it.” Frank Miller wrote that in the “Dark Knight Returns,” the game changing Batman prestige format book from the year 1986. It was a huge departure from anything that anyone had ever seen in comics before, with its rigid panel structure, stylized figures, and harsh use of both black space on the page, and an offbeat color palate. The narration box driven thought process, in stream of consciousness style, gave rise to the present disuse of thought balloons almost entirely.

Still…that one line about courage spoke to me, all those years ago. It still does.

The use of entirely black silhouettes in the final panel, to denote helicopters, was harder than you might think. Drawing like Frank Miller might seem easier than i thought, but some things, like that, are just a challenge. You need the shape of the chopper, with just its outline present. I decided that making the chopper blades seem to be whirling would undermine the effect…as Miller himself often avoids.

I told you last issue that the Dapper Helmet was going to get shredded, and lo, it does. That is my favorite panel, by the way, and I cropped it out here.

The feeling of motion, or the suit shredding, is what I like here.

The feeling of motion, or the suit shredding, is what I like here.

The choppers in the last panel are metaphorical, as are their lines. However, the protagonist is night invulnerable without the Laundry Machine Style War Machine Suit…so such a shot would in fact, be foolish and not worth it. I’ll leave it to you, Gentle Reader, to work out the metaphor here.

Next Issue: Part 4!


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