I’m back from the comic shop this week and I got two new comic plus a hard cover collection:

  • Echo – 10
  • Buffy Season Eight – 22
  • The Incredible Hercules “Love and War”
  • And now for a review of something I’ve read recently.

  • “Charley’s War 17 October 1916 – 21 February 1917” By Pat Mills and Joe Coloquhoun

    This is the third volume in the “Charley’s War” series of books collecting the series of four page comics that first appeared in the British magazine “Battle Picture Weekly ” in the early Eighties. I had to look that up on the internet because I’ve never heard of this series before and that info wasn’t printed in this volume.

    This is an excellent comic. Though I never read the first two volumes the third stands on its own very well. Charley is a sixteen year old British Tommy who lied about his age to join the army. It’s World War One and the battle of the Somme is going on.

    I’ve never seen trench warfare depicted so vividly and viciously. I know that the trenches of WWI were hell but that is really brought to life here. Since this is told from an English point of view the Germans are the villains, and there are villainous Germans, but the real evil is the madness of war. Especially the madness of trench warfare. You do not want to be stuck in the trenches of WWI.

    Though the writing on this book is certainly good it is the artist who is the star. I’ve never heard of Joe Coloquhoun before but his art shines on. His art (like many others of his generation born 1926) looks like it was influenced by the old school illustrative comic strips of the 1930’s. Pages are jam packed with lots of figures and lush backgrounds. His story telling is dynamite and he brings things to life. Mud, muck, blood, death, fear, and heroism are all nicely illustrated.

    In the last part of the book Charley gets to head home for a while and we get a glimpse of the dangers of life on the home front. Certainly not as intense as the parts about the trenches the story is still very interesting and well done. Munitions factory explosions and German zeppelin attacks are constant dangers in London.

    I liked this book a lot. I’m going to have to track down the other volumes. I suggest you do the same.