I know there’s some Birds of Prey readers out there who also read this site. (At least, one, maybe, does Esther read this stuff or just her own posts? I bet I could zing her good and she would never notice…) Anyway, BoP fans! Honest question here, because it’s been picking at my brain.
Why do you read it?
BoP is in this weird space for me. Gail Simone isn’t really to my taste, but I can see why people like her. But Ed Benes, whoo boy. Simone said he “does lovely, subtle acting, and tremendous facial expressions and body language. I think he brings a very fiery European influence that is a wonderful remedy to some of the tired vaguely manga and video game-esque influences we’ve seen lately.” And man, let me tell you, I can’t think of a single thing in that sentence that I don’t want to pull apart, throw into a Glad bag, and drown in a river. He sucks, is what I’m saying, and I think he’s filling too many pages with drawings of women vulving like their life depends on it rather than doing things like having faces that emote and bodies that act. (No shots.)
One thing I noticed when poking around on blogs and reviews that praise BoP is that they only ever seem to praise Simone, and highly, at that. It’s her book, and with good reason, and Benes tends to get, at most, a line or two about a kick to the face or a guts pose. It comes across, and this is obviously a generalization, that fans of BoP enjoy Simone’s half of the book and tolerate Benes’s half. The art gets short shrift in a way that it doesn’t for other cape comics.
Is that weird? Am I seeing patterns where there aren’t any? I know that I have a (perfectly rational) dislike of the Benes studio’s work (ask me about it sometime), and others like have a perfectly rational like of their work (maybe). I liked it a lot more back when he was a cartoonier Jim Lee, the Wildstorm and early BoP days.
For the fans, are you reading it for Simone? Is it because there’s slim pickings for ladycomics with superheroes? Are you 100% into the comic, writing and art
, and I’m just a jerk? For the non-fans, why aren’t you reading it?