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Spirit, The - Achives VOL 12 Hardcover – Dec 1 2003


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Hardcover, Dec 1 2003
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 196 pages
  • Publisher: DC Comics; 1 edition (Dec 1 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401200060
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401200060
  • Product Dimensions: 26.2 x 17.4 x 2.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 662 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,479,870 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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I thoroughly recommend this book to Spirit fans, but not necessarily as the ideal introduction to the Great Spirit.
This volume is The Spirit's springtime.
"The Spirit" at his greatest was characterised by excellent stories, well paced, superb viewer angles in the art-work, and wonderful tension built by the ambiguity in the relationships between the Spirit and the regular characters.
In this volume the stories are good, and the pacing and the angles are developing. The cast of characters is only in its infancy.
The masterpieces are yet to come in future volumes.
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It is already said by others here: Eisners return to the Spirit didn't pass unnoticed. You see the quality raise immediately.
His replacements during wartime where merely telling stories with pictures.
Will composes words and drawings to a never before seen unity.
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For the sake of completeness, DC re-issued all the previous sets of Sunday newspaper "Spirit" supplements created while the strip's creator, Will Eisner, was off serving during the war. But those comics by other artists (issued as #5-11 in the SPIRIT ARCHIVES series) are nothing compared to what Eisner produced before the war and certainly nothing like what he produced after it. The last book in the series ended with Eisner's return to the series with his "Christmas Spirit" story for 1945; this volume is all Eisner and shows how he had become if anything even more inventive both artistically and in terms of narrative during his absence from "the Spirit." The collection introduces (and shows the exeunt) of Blubber, Ebony's Aleutian Indian replacement as the Spirit's assistant, and it also introduces the great post-war villain, Mr. Carrion (and his pet buzzard Julia). But it is most noteworthy for some of the most inventive art and narrative that have ever been produced in the comics medium , particularly in the stories "The Fly," "The Last Trolley," "Magnifying Glasses" (a brilliant comics metacommentary on perspective), "The Bucket of Blood" and "The Rubber Band." This shows the beginning of probably the best work (and certainly the most original) done in the comics medium since "Little Nemo in Slumberland."
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Notice the "Will Eisner Returns" seal at the bottom of this book. Volumes 5-11 contain work by other artists. This one (1946 comics) is true Eisner, and some of his best work. The splash page on the dust jacket is from "Last Trolley", one of Eisner's best stories. For the uninitiated, The Spirit is a masked crimefighter, with a secret identity (ala Batman). But he has no powers, just his fists. This comic is the closest you'll get to the 40's film noir classics. It's tough, touching humorous and loads of fun. The package is expensive, but worth it: hard bound, half year of comics, each expertly colored.
Fans of The Spirit will find this the best packaging of the often reprinted series (1940-1952).
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 7 reviews
17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
The most inventive streak of the most inventive of comics Jan. 18 2004
By Jay Dickson - Published on Amazon.com
For the sake of completeness, DC re-issued all the previous sets of Sunday newspaper "Spirit" supplements created while the strip's creator, Will Eisner, was off serving during the war. But those comics by other artists (issued as #5-11 in the SPIRIT ARCHIVES series) are nothing compared to what Eisner produced before the war and certainly nothing like what he produced after it. The last book in the series ended with Eisner's return to the series with his "Christmas Spirit" story for 1945; this volume is all Eisner and shows how he had become if anything even more inventive both artistically and in terms of narrative during his absence from "the Spirit." The collection introduces (and shows the exeunt) of Blubber, Ebony's Aleutian Indian replacement as the Spirit's assistant, and it also introduces the great post-war villain, Mr. Carrion (and his pet buzzard Julia). But it is most noteworthy for some of the most inventive art and narrative that have ever been produced in the comics medium , particularly in the stories "The Fly," "The Last Trolley," "Magnifying Glasses" (a brilliant comics metacommentary on perspective), "The Bucket of Blood" and "The Rubber Band." This shows the beginning of probably the best work (and certainly the most original) done in the comics medium since "Little Nemo in Slumberland."
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Will Eisner returns! Aug. 13 2009
By Johnny Heering - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
This volume of The Spirit Archives reprints the Spirit comic strips from January to June 1946. Spirit creator Will Eisner had just gotten out of the army and resumed work on the comic. Eisner was one of the greatest creators in the history of comics, so you can't go wrong here.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
return of the composer Feb. 4 2004
By R. Boosten - Published on Amazon.com
It is already said by others here: Eisners return to the Spirit didn't pass unnoticed. You see the quality raise immediately.
His replacements during wartime where merely telling stories with pictures.
Will composes words and drawings to a never before seen unity.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
These Archive Editions are actually pretty terrible July 1 2013
By Art - Published on Amazon.com
First off, to clarify: I am not reviewing the content of Eisner's classic comic strip. "The Spirit" (flaws notwithstanding) stands on its own merits as a virtuoso piece of graphic storytelling, and one of the most influential comics of the century.

This review concerns the actual DC Archives hardcovers, which are starting to attract big bucks as they slip out of print.

Bottom line: Eisner's masterpiece deserves a *much* better archival presentation than this.

If you ever get a chance to compare these volumes (or DC's cheaper paperback Spirit volumes) to the Warren black & white reprints from the 70s, you will immediately notice the following:

1) DC's reproductions are tiny. The page size is much smaller than the Warren magazines to begin with (I think the originals were even larger), and the fact that the DC volumes are narrow (like a modern-day comic book) means that the wide Spirit pages are crammed into the middle of the page with lots of blank space on the top and bottom of each page. That right there is less-than-ideal, but combine it with:

2) The quality of the reproduction is terrible. Whether that's solely due to the small size, or whether DC could not get clean copies to work with, I don't know, but comparing the same panel in the DC version vs. the Warren version inevitably reveals a significant amount of lost detail in the DC edition.

Finally,

3) The coloring in the DC versions is absolutely terrible. The Spirit is often described as a "noir" comic strip, and it was clearly influenced by the crime movies of its day. So why did DC decide to color it with garish primary colors throughout? Worse yet, the coloring in many panels is literally nonsensical, e.g. if a character is walking into a room, and his face is in shadow, then -- call me crazy -- maybe the interior of the room should be colored in dark color? Not bright red or yellow?

There are countless examples of this sort of careless, nonsensical coloring choices in any volume of the DC Spirit Archives Series, and taken together, they tend to destroy the careful composition of Eisner's pages. I find my attention wandering as I attempt to read these volumes, since I have to fight to figure out what's going on from panel to panel.

Seriously, as great as the Spirit strip is, it is extremely ill-served by these careless, sloppy editions.

The volume does get one extra star (two instead of one) for having a real sewn binding instead of DC's currently preferred method (gluing a paperback book inside a hardcover and selling it at the hardcover price).
3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Will Eisner's Golden Period Jan. 5 2004
By John Gentile - Published on Amazon.com
Notice the "Will Eisner Returns" seal at the bottom of this book. Volumes 5-11 contain work by other artists. This one (1946 comics) is true Eisner, and some of his best work. The splash page on the dust jacket is from "Last Trolley", one of Eisner's best stories. For the uninitiated, The Spirit is a masked crimefighter, with a secret identity (ala Batman). But he has no powers, just his fists. This comic is the closest you'll get to the 40's film noir classics. It's tough, touching humorous and loads of fun. The package is expensive, but worth it: hard bound, half year of comics, each expertly colored.
Fans of The Spirit will find this the best packaging of the often reprinted series (1940-1952).

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