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The Matrix comics


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Finally, What Is The Matrix.com's excellent collection of Matrix comics, done by some of the industry's biggest names (just take a look at the credits at the bottom of that picture! Ive long since saved many of them to my drive, but look forward to havin em in collected format.


Fortunately, the website's hosting a 20 page preview (!), Check it out right here!


Releasing in October, one month before The Matrix: Revolutions, this volume collects twelve original stories set in the world of The Matrix. Read tales that expand the universe of The Matrix, written and illustrated by many of today's top comic book luminaries, including Larry and Andy Wachowski (writers/directors of The Matrix), Geof Darrow (Hard Boiled, Big Guy and Rusty the Boy Robot), Bill Sienkiewicz (Stray Toasters, Elektra: Assassin), Neil Gaiman (Sandman, Death: The High Cost of Living), Ted McKeever (Metropol, Wonder Woman: The Blue Amazon), John Van Fleet (Typhoid, Batman: The Ankh), Dave Gibbons (Watchmen, The Originals), David Lapham (Stray Bullets, Murder Me Dead), Peter Bagge (Hate, Sweatshop), Troy Nixey (Jenny Finn, Trout), Paul Chadwick (Concrete, The World Below), Ryder Windham (Star Wars Comics), Kilian Plunkett (Aliens: Labyrinth), and Gregory Ruth (Sudden Gravity, Freaks of the Heartland).  SC, 160pg


The book is supposed to premier 10/3 (?) according to one website; preorder it here for only $15.37 (scroll alla way down to the bottom)

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  • 3 weeks later...

Wow, so no one else is hyped on this one, eh? I should put a link in the movie forum...ive read most of this stuff already, and its damn fine sidestories, like the Animatrix.

Ill link back to the website for some previews when i can find em.

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  • 4 weeks later...

The 4th Rail.com's review





"Bits & Pieces of Information" Writers: Larry & Andy Wachowski

Artist: Geof Darrow

"Sweating The Small Stuff" Writer/Artist: Bill Sienkiewicz

"A Life Less Empty" Writer/Artist: Ted McKeever

"Goliath" Writer: Neil Gaiman, Artists: Bill Sienkiewicz & Greg Ruth

"Burning Hope" Writer/Artist: John Van Fleet

"Butterfly" Writer/Artist: Dave Gibbons

"A Sword Of A Different Color" Writer/Artist: Troy Nixey

"Get It?" Writer/Artist: Peter Bagge

"There Are No Flowers In The Real World" Writer/Artist: David Lapham

"The Miller's Tale" Writer/Artist: Paul Chadwick

"Artistic Freedom" Writer: Ryder Windham, Artist: Kilian Plunkett

"Hunters And Collectors" Writer/Artist: Gregory Ruth

Editors: Spencer Lamm, Larry & Andy Wachowski

Price: $21.95 US


(if you'd like to privew them, almost all are available to read, in their entirety, at the matrix site.

Recommended (8/10)


Like many, I was let down by the sequels to The Matrix, but my disappointment with elements from the second and third films wasn't about to stop me from picking up the comics, which generally did a pretty good job of running with the potential established in the first film. Just as The Animatrix told stories in and around The Matrix that were actually more true to the spirit of the first film than the two sequels, so too do The Matrix Comics. The stories don't always feel like "canon," especially with the alterations in the framework of the film made by the sequels, and some of them are a little odd for my taste, but they are all very intriguing, and they come with the vision of a pretty varied and talented group of some of comics' more esoteric talents, as well as some of its big mainstream names.


For my money, the strongest story in this volume, and probably my favorite of all the Matrix comics so far, is David Lapham's "There Are No Flowers In The Real World." Lapham blends his own gritty style from Stray Bullets with the weird, philosophical dual world set up in The Matrix, and presents some compelling characters, an interesting examination of the choices that are required of those who want to fight the machines. The story is also one of the more straightforward of all the stories to be found here, playing less head games with the readers while still utilizing some of the philosophical headspace that The Matrix opened up.


I also enjoyed, for very different reasons, Neil Gaiman's illustrated prose piece that puts a human from The Matrix up against alien invaders in the real world. It's a tough fit into Matrix canon, but it's a clever expansion of the nature of the reality of The Matrix, and given Gaiman's ability to write about dream states and other realms, it's no surprise that he takes a great idea and runs with it. Less out there, but equally compelling, are Gregory Ruth's Moby Dick by way of The Matrix tale "Hunters and Collectors" and Paul Chadwick's "The Miller's Tale," which speaks of an unusually sedate but important form of keeping the human spirit alive. Troy Nixey's "A Sword of A Different Color" is similar to both of these tales as well, taking his inspiration from St. George and Don Quixote and featuring some beautiful, animated cel style artwork.


Actually, the artwork throughout is impressive. Spencer Lamm and the Wachowski Brothers put together a pretty impressive list of comics talent here, and the art ranges from suitably surreal (Bill Sienkiewicz, Ted McKeever, John Van Fleet) to realistic and colorful (Dave Gibbons, Paul Chadwick, Kilian Plunkett) to spectacularly painted (Greg Ruth) and beyond. There is simply no bad artwork to be found in this volume, and while some of the stories are a bit meandering or unclear, the artwork is never less than beautiful to look at. For example, I felt like Dave Gibbons's story just didn't quite connect with me, but I can't deny that his visuals of a gunfight in the Matrix crashing into a humble monk's home were spectacular.


Normally I wouldn't go into much detail on the production values, but since Lamm said in online interviews that they couldn't find a place to do the trade that would give them what they were looking for and so they decided to go it alone, I figure it's fair game to mention a few flaws. Overall, the trade is gorgeous, on nice paper and with a terrific design sense. I'm a little wary of the binding, which feels like the kind of thing that might fall apart after a few re-readings, but time will tell on that one. Most of the problems I have are minor ones that would have escaped folks who aren't working in comics on a day-to-day, like failing to put the volume number on the spine, as is a current custom and pretty important thing for retailers.


The stories in this volume explore a few of the hundreds of questions raised by the first film and then sort of cast aside by the sequel so that other questions could be raised. Questions like: What happens when you choose the blue pill? Does humanity ever get to eat anything but mush? What are some of the other ways in which people can be awakened to the truth of The Matrix? What does the fight look like in the real world? There are many more questions, and many more exceptional comics that answer them, and I hope that we will indeed get future volumes of Matrix trades collecting all the comics on the site, and more to come.

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