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  1. #1
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    Default REVIEW: Sex Criminals, #9

    Matt Fraction and Chip Zdarsky not only move the overall plot forward in "Sex Criminals" #10 (Jon & Suzie prepare to try and stop the Sex Police), but give us a great backstory to a new character.


    Full review here.

  2. #2
    "Comic Book Reviewer" InformationGeek's Avatar
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    I wish I knew what was so good about Sex Criminals, because every time I read an issue and I feel empty inside. It's very absurd and crude humor, but... none of it ever feels clever or over the top enough to be all that funny. The dialogue is fine, but nothing ever sticks out. The characterization is perfectly fine, but at this point, I'm more interested in seeing a story actually happen than get anymore backstory or flashbacks. The artwork is fine but... nothing is truly remarkable about it besides the coloring.

    Now I didn't review it (Pat did over on AiPT and gave it a 9), but I did a reaction shot piece for it and also #8 as well. Oh well, at least it's fun talking about it...

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by InformationGeek View Post
    I wish I knew what was so good about Sex Criminals, because every time I read an issue and I feel empty inside. It's very absurd and crude humor, but... none of it ever feels clever or over the top enough to be all that funny. The dialogue is fine, but nothing ever sticks out. The characterization is perfectly fine, but at this point, I'm more interested in seeing a story actually happen than get anymore backstory or flashbacks. The artwork is fine but... nothing is truly remarkable about it besides the coloring.

    Now I didn't review it (Pat did over on AiPT and gave it a 9), but I did a reaction shot piece for it and also #8 as well. Oh well, at least it's fun talking about it...
    your words perfectly sum up my thoughts about this series. Also, i can't explain the emptiness feeling i got everytime. This is supposed to be a funny series, and it is funny..a lot...but i find it a little..."claustrophobic". Dunno why!

  4. #4
    (Formerly ilash) Ilan Preskovsky's Avatar
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    I don't think you guys are alone in this. I adore the book (it may be my favourite ongoing) and it has a huge following but I get the feeling that it's not one of Image's best loved comics on these forums at least.
    Check out my blog, Because Everyone Else Has One, for my regularly updated movie reviews.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ilan Preskovsky View Post
    I don't think you guys are alone in this. I adore the book (it may be my favourite ongoing) and it has a huge following but I get the feeling that it's not one of Image's best loved comics on these forums at least.
    I love it too! When my comics arrives in the mail, is one of those issues i read first! It is a lot of fun, but something's missing..

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aster View Post
    I love it too! When my comics arrives in the mail, is one of those issues i read first! It is a lot of fun, but something's missing..
    I think it's missing a sense of momentum in it's plot. The main characters are stuck in this kind of meandering, "we're not sure what we should do" kind of storyline. Combine that with the fact that the stakes don't seem very high (so far the consequences of their actions have led to some relationship strife and a torn down library) and I think that's why some folks aren't too involved in the story.

    Personally I'm loving the humor and the backgrounds on the new characters, and I'm content to let things build slowly. This last issue gave us clues as to where things are heading plot-wise, which I found interesting.

  7. #7
    "Comic Book Reviewer" InformationGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tylenoljones View Post
    I think it's missing a sense of momentum in it's plot. The main characters are stuck in this kind of meandering, "we're not sure what we should do" kind of storyline. Combine that with the fact that the stakes don't seem very high (so far the consequences of their actions have led to some relationship strife and a torn down library) and I think that's why some folks aren't too involved in the story.

    Personally I'm loving the humor and the backgrounds on the new characters, and I'm content to let things build slowly. This last issue gave us clues as to where things are heading plot-wise, which I found interesting.
    Well that's part of the reason for my criticism with the comic with the plot. It is meandering and feels like its spinning its wheels for a long time, especially with this second arc. I think the characterization is fine and well handled, but at this point, I would prefer some plot and forward momentum rather than character building or adding new characters.

  8. #8
    Living on the dolmantle eye of all's Avatar
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    Matt Fraction? Plot? Be serious, you guys.
    Read Prophet, live Stray Bullets.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by InformationGeek View Post
    I wish I knew what was so good about Sex Criminals, because every time I read an issue and I feel empty inside. It's very absurd and crude humor, but... none of it ever feels clever or over the top enough to be all that funny. The dialogue is fine, but nothing ever sticks out. The characterization is perfectly fine, but at this point, I'm more interested in seeing a story actually happen than get anymore backstory or flashbacks. The artwork is fine but... nothing is truly remarkable about it besides the coloring.

    Now I didn't review it (Pat did over on AiPT and gave it a 9), but I did a reaction shot piece for it and also #8 as well. Oh well, at least it's fun talking about it...
    Honestly I have that problem with a lot of Fraction stuff. His books often feel like he had a good idea he was so taken with that he forgot to put it to good use. Hawkeye for example is a great idea (an average Joe Avenger on his days off), but the actual story is sort of a mess. The driving force behind this comic seems to be joking about taboo sex-related topics, which would not be my cup of tea anyway, but it doesn't seem like he's doing anything much with that concept. Or to put it another way, his stuff is clever, but way too taken with itself to tell stories.

  10. #10
    (Formerly ilash) Ilan Preskovsky's Avatar
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    Yeah, see, the plot really doesn't matter very much to me. I love Sex Criminals for its characters, its humour, its frankness and the fact that its clearly immensely personal to both creators so its undeniably silly premise and any actual plot that it has going for it really feel like they're just there to serve the above. I think the book will only really run into trouble if the reverse ever becomes the case. After all, Fraction and Zdarsky never expected this series to last beyond the first arc so I'd rather they keep this ramshackle but interesting and effective approach to the storytelling than have them shift too much attention towards conventional plot-driven writing. "Plot" has simply never been what the book is actually about, seeing as how it is based on a premise that was pretty clearly mostly meant as a joke or, at the very least, a mad, tongue-in-cheek metaphor that would them to explore whatever particular themes they have in mind but in a comedic, generally fantastical way.

    More plot would be fine but I just don't think that's ever going to be the selling point of the book - at least I certainly hope not.
    Last edited by Ilan Preskovsky; 12-14-2014 at 07:22 PM.
    Check out my blog, Because Everyone Else Has One, for my regularly updated movie reviews.

  11. #11
    "Comic Book Reviewer" InformationGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ilan Preskovsky View Post
    Yeah, see, the plot really doesn't matter very much to me. I love Sex Criminals for its characters, its humour, its frankness and the fact that its clearly immensely personal to both creators so its undeniably silly premise and any actual plot that it has going for it really feel like they're just there to serve the above. I think the book will only really run into trouble if the reverse ever becomes the case. After all, Fraction and Zdarsky never expected this series to last beyond the first arc so I'd rather they keep this ramshackle but interesting and effective approach to the storytelling than have them shift too much attention towards conventional plot-driven writing. "Plot" has simply never been what the book is actually about, seeing as how it is based on a premise that was pretty clearly mostly meant as a joke or, at the very least, a mad, tongue-in-cheek metaphor that would them to explore whatever particular themes they have in mind but in a comedic, generally fantastical way.

    More plot would be fine but I just don't think that's ever going to be the selling point of the book - at least I certainly hope not.
    Well I'm definitely a more character-focused individual when it comes to stories (I feel good characters had a lot of depth, emotion, personality, and also allows the readers to feel more invested in the story happening), I also do like a good story as well and I would like it if the comic put a bit more into the plot. I think that's what is keeping this comic from being truly amazing, besides the humor in my eyes (but that's a whole other discussion), the plot and structure are just weak. Of course, opinions vary, but that's my view.

    Quote Originally Posted by eye of all View Post
    Matt Fraction? Plot? Be serious, you guys.
    Quote Originally Posted by Agent John Bishop View Post
    Honestly I have that problem with a lot of Fraction stuff. His books often feel like he had a good idea he was so taken with that he forgot to put it to good use. Hawkeye for example is a great idea (an average Joe Avenger on his days off), but the actual story is sort of a mess.
    Yeah, that's kind of what I feel about Fraction in a nutshell. He has interesting premises and does some decent character work, but his stories tend to fall on the weak side or just fall flat. It's what keeps him from being a good writer to me.

  12. #12
    (Formerly ilash) Ilan Preskovsky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by InformationGeek View Post
    Well I'm definitely a more character-focused individual when it comes to stories (I feel good characters had a lot of depth, emotion, personality, and also allows the readers to feel more invested in the story happening), I also do like a good story as well and I would like it if the comic put a bit more into the plot. I think that's what is keeping this comic from being truly amazing, besides the humor in my eyes (but that's a whole other discussion), the plot and structure are just weak. Of course, opinions vary, but that's my view.
    Oh, sure, I totally get where you're coming from. It's just that in this particular case at this particular time (who knows if I'll feel the same way by the time the series hits issue 30 or 15 for that matter) I, personally, am really enjoying the free-wheeling nature of the series. And I don't think the structure is weak so much as it's virtually non-existent - which, again, I like but I understand if others don't. I read loads of really great, very structured, meticulously plotted comics (Saga, Velvet, Lazarus, Southern Bastards etc.) so the anything goes nature of Sex Criminals stands in welcome contrast to the rest of what I read.
    Check out my blog, Because Everyone Else Has One, for my regularly updated movie reviews.

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