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on 24 March 2012
Warren Ellis has written the series so far with 3-issue bursts of a linear story with a couple of one shot issues that either expand the world or are side stories to the overall story arc but with "Dirge" he ditches this arrangement and goes straight out for the story arc. A sniper is picking off innocents in the Print District at the same time the police have "blue flu" and decide to call in sick, en masse. Something's up and Spider's on the case. If the carnage wreaked by the sniper weren't enough, a ruinstorm (like a tsunami) hits the east coast turning the City into a disaster zone. And if that weren't enough for a bad day, Spider gets the medical verdict on his recent health problems...

"Dirge" takes what was already an insanely addictive storyline and turns it up to 11. From the opening shots of the sniper to the crescendo of the disaster weather, Ellis doesn't let up on the throttle for a moment, careening the reader from one maniacal scene to another. He brings it down slowly for Spider to find out he has a brain disease and a limited amount of time before it destroys his mind, and then sends Spider into the penultimate confrontation between himself and the Smiler.

This book is a roller-coaster journey for fans of the series and only serves to whet the reader's appetite for more. Masterful storytelling from Ellis, art from Darick Robertson which is the best work he's done on the series yet, this is a must-read for any fans of the series and an example of how comics can be more interesting than movies, TV, or the internet when it's this good.
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on 24 January 2014
Warren Ellis has written the series so far with 3-issue bursts of a linear story with a couple of one shot issues that either expand the world or are side stories to the overall story arc but with "Dirge" he ditches this arrangement and goes straight out for the story arc. A sniper is picking off innocents in the Print District at the same time the police have "blue flu" and decide to call in sick, en masse. Something's up and Spider's on the case. If the carnage wreaked by the sniper weren't enough, a ruinstorm (like a tsunami) hits the east coast turning the City into a disaster zone. And if that weren't enough for a bad day, Spider gets the medical verdict on his recent health problems...

"Dirge" takes what was already an insanely addictive storyline and turns it up to 11. From the opening shots of the sniper to the crescendo of the disaster weather, Ellis doesn't let up on the throttle for a moment, careening the reader from one maniacal scene to another. He brings it down slowly for Spider to find out he has a brain disease and a limited amount of time before it destroys his mind, and then sends Spider into the penultimate confrontation between himself and the Smiler.

This book is a roller-coaster journey for fans of the series and only serves to whet the reader's appetite for more. Masterful storytelling from Ellis, art from Darick Robertson which is the best work he's done on the series yet, this is a must-read for any fans of the series and an example of how comics can be more interesting than movies, TV, or the internet when it's this good.
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on 18 May 2013
This is a fantastic volume full of great art and mature storytelling.

There are no zombies, aliens or supervillains here. Our antagonist, the president, is truly diabolical and may even be mad but he is still human and very credible. There will be no technobabble, silver bullets or magic potion to save the day. Spider is a hero in the classic sense of the word and like Odysseus he can only triumph through his own skill and courage. This is proper grown up writing, completely relevant to our lives today.

Spider is genuinely in trouble. His illness is a wonderful ticking clock turning up the tension and reminding us that the hero need not survive the battle for it to be a great story. With just a few volumes to go we are in the final act and you wouldn't want to miss this for the world.

The art which was crazily good before just goes off the scale. There are a lot of wordless pages leaving the pictures to impart a sense of epicness that would only be diminished by text. The first part of the book is entirely black borders then after an important story point it changes to white. This subtle transition is an amazingly effective device. At one point borders and panels are abandoned almost completely with the elements of each picture dividing up the page artistically and effectively. There is an internal monologue scene with Spider that just uses grey and black with his lone figure peering out of the darkness that is simply breath-taking.

This is the volume that confirms you never want this story to end. Double Thumbs Up!
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on 18 May 2013
This is a fantastic volume full of great art and mature storytelling.

There are no zombies, aliens or supervillains here. Our antagonist, the president, is truly diabolical and may even be mad but he is still human and very credible. There will be no technobabble, silver bullets or magic potion to save the day. Spider is a hero in the classic sense of the word and like Odysseus he can only triumph through his own skill and courage. This is proper grown up writing, completely relevant to our lives today.

Spider is genuinely in trouble. His illness is a wonderful ticking clock turning up the tension and reminding us that the hero need not survive the battle for it to be a great story. With just a few volumes to go we are in the final act and you wouldn't want to miss this for the world.

The art which was crazily good before just goes off the scale. There are a lot of wordless pages leaving the pictures to impart a sense of epicness that would only be diminished by text. The first part of the book is entirely black borders then after an important story point it changes to white. This subtle transition is an amazingly effective device. At one point borders and panels are abandoned almost completely with the elements of each picture dividing up the page artistically and effectively. There is an internal monologue scene with Spider that just uses grey and black with his lone figure peering out of the darkness that is simply breath-taking.

This is the volume that confirms you never want this story to end. Double Thumbs Up!
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on 18 May 2013
This is a fantastic volume full of great art and mature storytelling.

There are no zombies, aliens or supervillains here. Our antagonist, the president, is truly diabolical and may even be mad but he is still human and very credible. There will be no technobabble, silver bullets or magic potion to save the day. Spider is a hero in the classic sense of the word and like Odysseus he can only triumph through his own skill and courage. This is proper grown up writing, completely relevant to our lives today.

Spider is genuinely in trouble. His illness is a wonderful ticking clock turning up the tension and reminding us that the hero need not survive the battle for it to be a great story. With just a few volumes to go we are in the final act and you wouldn't want to miss this for the world.

The art which was crazily good before just goes off the scale. There are a lot of wordless pages leaving the pictures to impart a sense of epicness that would only be diminished by text. The first part of the book is entirely black borders then after an important story point it changes to white. This subtle transition is an amazingly effective device. At one point borders and panels are abandoned almost completely with the elements of each picture dividing up the page artistically and effectively. There is an internal monologue scene with Spider that just uses grey and black with his lone figure peering out of the darkness that is simply breath-taking.

This is the volume that confirms you never want this story to end. Double Thumbs Up!
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on 22 May 2013
All the series is a "must have" if you like comic-books. For me is a classic at the same level of "Watchmen" in his time or "The Ultimates" of Mark Millar and Brian Hitch.
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