Monday, April 02, 2012


Picked up War is Hell: The First Flight of the Phantom Eagle a bit ago at Hastings for $3.99--cheaper than the cost of a single issue, when it came out in 2008. The above is from the back cover, a detail of the cover for #3 by John Cassaday, and I kind of hate it: the planes remind me of a Lucky Charms ad or something.

But the actual story, written by Garth Ennis, with art by Howard Chaykin; is great. In 1917, young and idealistic pilot Karl Kaufman bluffs his way into joining a squad of the Royal Flying Corps in France; and finds in short order that air combat isn't going to be the chivalrous battle of knights that he'd expected. Although a talented flier, Kaufman's also naive, a bit gullible, and pretty much has to learn every lesson about the hardest way you possibly could.

As the title suggests, Kaufman is based on obscure Marvel character the Phantom Eagle. Slightly. The name comes into play in the last issue, but not in a way you'd probably expect.

I didn't pick this one up in 2008 because of the price; but I should have more faith in Garth Ennis. I picked up a couple of his Authority: Kev trades on the cheap some time ago, and liked those a lot more than I thought I was going to. Come to think of it, I got the trade for Battlefields: the Tankies a little bit ago. It's shorter and a bit more slight, but still good.

1 comment:

Dale Bagwell said...

This looks like something everyone should check out soon er or later.