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Saturday, May 05, 2007

Gore Watch! 05/05/07

"What the hell!" you scream, "Where have you been Gore Watch?"

Well, gentle folk, just last week as I sat down at my PC to begin another searing exposé of the comics world, there was a knock at my door. Two men in suits awaited me, subpoenas and cease-and-desist letters clutched in their sweaty, regulated palms. Well, they saw I was made of sterner stuff and broke down right there on my doorstep, begging and pleading with me to stop. Stop my weekly brain-soaked exploration of the darker side of popular graphic entertainment. It seems that I, Andrew Salmond, have brought the mighty publishers to their knees. Unable now to freely propagate their gory wares as substitute for good old fashioned storytelling, they were hitting a dead end. They had, it seems, forgotten what good old fashioned storytelling even was. They offered me every enticement, every incentive to stop. Money. Power. Space tourism. But it wasn't enough*. So, after giving them a week to think they were safe in their blood-stained ivory towers, I'm back.

That story may or may not be true.

Two of my top keyword searches for the blog yesterday were "beheading sound" and "broke his leg".

That story is true.

Anyway, enough blurb. On with the show!

Moral crusade.....I meant moral crusade....


I've said it before and I'll say it again: a vague "Parental Guidance" warning on the cover does not compensate for the fact that this is Wolverine, one of Marvel's most popular characters. And it certainly doesn't cover lingering, tube-y severed heads.

What the @#$% kind of guidance does that require?

I almost cherry-picked the following page, but then I figured it sits better in all it's blood-on-every-panel glory. Slashed chest! Injury to eye! Impaling!

And finally, a lingering shot of the sword resting in Sabretooth's cushion-y bosom.


To be fair, it seems a little silly to pick out anything in an issue where a large amount of time is spent with Connor Hawke (son of the Green Arrow) fighting a guy in nappies in a gigantic pool of blood. For example, any given page may look a little like this:

But I think the following sequence qualifies, with the son of Green Arrow taking the arrow which has pierced his hand, shoving it the chest of his enemy, and then (click on this for a closer look) giving it a little encouragement to really get things gushing.

Holy shik! Now that's super-heroic!


Again with the whole zombie cheat in the Atom, but the last time I saw a poorly drawn shovel get planted in a living person's head it looked exactly like this.

What will little Timmy Bellbottoms think when Granny brings that home?
"Daddy, do good guys kill people with shovels?"


So DC go line-wide with some gore this week, getting a bit of bony meat-hook action on the Green Lantern Corps. You know Green Lantern. He's in a team with Superman. He makes giant tractors and colossal cash registers out of green stuff. His nemesis, Sinestro, does the same thing, only it's made out of yellow stuff. And he probably makes giant pelicans. And shovels.

Oh, and makes bloody kebabs of his enemies.


Catwoman is actually a pretty decent read. Will Pfeiffer juggles a nice varied cast of characters, and he writes women well. And, to be honest, I don't expect this title to end up here.

Oops. Maybe Will's been having a few drinks with Geoff Johns. Y'know, when I was a kid that kind of action would gotten you an R18 rating. Now it's a full page splash in a comic starring a mainstream, recognisable super(anti)hero. Well, I guess I shouldn't...pfftt....LOSE MY HEAD!


Remember Iron Man? Last month, All Ages rated Iron Man gave us an autopsy, a popped head, and a nipple. This month, rated "A" for All Iron Man gives us.....


At least that's the sound it should have made. Just imagine if they'd done this in 52! What do you think? Answers in the comments below.

A couple of points about Iron Man:
a) It's actually a pretty decent read at the moment.
b) It's written by the father/son team of Daniel and Charles Knauf. Daniel was responsible for HBO's excellent and lamented Carnivale, which I bought the first box set of a couple of weeks back, and which you should watch.

Move on, people! Move on! Nothing to see here!

*Not quite enough.


  1. Anonymous8:24 am

    Anyone broke a victim's leg off & beat them to death with it yet? Or syringed an eyeball with bleach?? Only a matter of time I suppose..
    I don't really know what the rest of my generation feel about it, but I'm not keen on comics being too gruesome (at least not in the modern, overly descriptive way). And yet I really don't mind it in movies at all, where on the whole it's far more realistic. What gives? Do I need to see a doctor??

  2. Curiously, I know exactly what you mean....