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The Escapists Paperback – 17 Nov 2009


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Product details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Dark Horse (17 Nov 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1595823611
  • ISBN-13: 978-1595823618
  • Product Dimensions: 15.4 x 0.9 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,342,028 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By S. Bentley VINE VOICE on 6 Dec 2009
Format: Paperback
A young adult's mother dies. With his inheritance he buys the rights to forgotten hero The Escapist, and employs his friends to create a new comic. A publicity stunt goes awry in a good way at first, making the comic a success but leading to trauma for all three friends. And there's a romance in there too.

Brian K. Vaughn's story is a jolly little thing that will appeal to us geeks who want to make comics. It takes its inspiration from Michael Chabon's The Amazing Adventures of Cavalier and Klay, which you should read if you have any interest in comics at all. It's also the sort of story that doesn't hold a lot of surprises. It hits exactly the marks you'd expect. Which doesn't make it bad, it's like climbing into a warm bed and sipping on a strawberry milkshake while eating chocolate hobnobs, but it's not going to break any moulds and it hardly says anything new.

The art is very nice, by diverse hands. The real world has Steve Rolston's cartoony art, Jason Alexander draws the new Escapist in a Jae Lee scratchy edgy style that befits what that strip is meant to be, and Eduardo Barreto draws classic Escapist in a classic way. The twining of comic strip world and real world doesn't extend as far as in an Alan Moore comic - this isn't the Black Freighter in Watchmen - but the two elements do come together quite neatly.

It's a pleasure to read, but it just doesn't try hard enough to be one of the great new works of comics.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 10 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
The Amazing Adventures of Roth, Weaver and Jones 22 Mar 2008
By Steve Fuson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
In Michael Chabon's Pulitzer-Prize winning "The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay," two teenagers create the comic book character The Escapist in the forties. Since then Dark Horse comics has been featuring comics about the Escapist and other characters from Chabons book. This book, however, is actually a sequel to the original book.

Just in case you're unaware, Amazon offers a "Search Inside" feature. If you go up to the image of this graphic novel above and click on it, you can read the first six pages of the book. Go up and read it. Seriously. Those pages sold me on the book.

Back already?

After his father's death, Maxwell Roth discovers his collection of Escapist comics. We see young Max's geeky, awkward youth. We meet his equally awkward but much bigger--and therefore bully repelant--friend Denny Jones. When Max's mother dies, she leaves him an inheritance which he uses to buy the rights to the Escapist. He bumps into Case Weaver, a cute starving artist, who he approaches to illustrate the book.

After months of work and a publicity stunt gone horribly right, they achieve a modicum of success, but a big businessman is interested in reacquiring the rights to the now popluar character, and he has the money and the lawyers to do it.

Broken down that plot sounds like a cheesy eighties movie, but the characterization is done well so you don't notice, and the story doesn't play out in a predictable or sacharine fashion. Through some major highs and major lows, the book ends with a simple but strong ending.

If you haven't heard of Brian K. Vaughan, you should know he's one of the top comics writers of his generation. This book proves why.

"The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay" used the comics industry of the forties, fifties, sixties, and seventies as a back drop. This book uses the present. While this story and its characters aren't as complicated (and to be fair it has less than half the page count, and Michael Chabon uses more words in one sentence than most comics have on a page) The Escapists is still a great book, and really shows what the medium of sequential art can achieve while holding onto and honoring its superhero roots.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
BKV does it again 20 Oct 2008
By Robert Nunez - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Brian K. Vaughan is so predictable. Predictable in the sense that his stuff is always the best f what comics can be. Pride of Baghdad, Y: The Last Man, Ex Machina, Runaways. I've been reading comic for over 30 years and BKV makes me more excited about the medium than I've ever been.
This book is beautiful. The story is exciting, moving, personal and, most of all, fun. It works as a sequel to Michael Chabon's delightful The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay.
A collection of extremely talented artist take on different aspects of the story and it really works. Instead of feeling disjointed, the various art styles take us to the different moods and states of mind the story weaves in and out of. Word and pictures here work like the music and lyrics of a beautiful song. Masterful.
If you love comics and good storytelling, you'll love this book. I sure did!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
BKV strikes gold. 14 Jan 2008
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Beautiful, dialog and character driven story. The artwork was amazing on all accounts, with Bond and Rolston making a near flawless transition that could not have been pulled off better. i Can't read this book enough. This is just one smart and fun read for anyone who likes reading about a major character from the past who never existed.
Not worthy of the universe Michael Chabon created 31 July 2013
By Jimmy - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
After I finished Michael Chabon's magnum opus The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay I was elated to find out that several graphics novels had been written about the Escapist. I ordered this book because Brian Vaughan is well-respected in the graphic novel realm. I don't know if he was approached to write this, or he just got in over his head, but the book was extremely underwhelming.

Without going into to much detail as it's a pretty short read, the story takes place decades after the original story and follows three workers trying to form a independent comic book studio and resurrect the Escapist brand. I was extremely intrigued by the idea and was ready to jump in.

Unforunately the story just doesn't live up to my expecations for it. The characters are easy and somewhat generic, a stark contract to Kavalier and Clay. I understand that a 150 page comic book has less room to tell a story than a 550 page book, but the story seemed short and shallow.

I don't recommend it.
A surprising tale 5 Feb 2013
By D.F. Matthews - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is not your usual comic book. This a brilliant tale of life. Brian K. Vaughan shows his talent yet again in this story which leaves you panting for more by it's end.
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