Friday, 11 September 2009

Top Ten Writers #3: Warren Ellis

Back in a blaze of ACTUAL ENTHUSIASM! BOO-YAH!

It's been a long road, a MUCH longer road than I originally intended it to be. Still, we finally enter the top 3 in all of their godly powers. This time it's a God of SHEER INSANITY. A God who wouldn't hesitate to rip off your head and pour strange liquids down it.

Of course I'm talking about


Who is he?: 41 year old futurist with murderous tendencies

What has he done that I might know?: Oh fuck where to begin?
Astonishing X-Men (Ghost Boxes), Iron Man: Extremis, Newuniversal, Nextwave: Agents of H.A.T.E., Thunderbolts (110-121), Ultimate Fantastic Four, Ultimate Human, Ultimate Galactus Trilogy, The Authority, Planetary, Desolation Jones, Transmetropolitan, Doktor Sleepless, FreakAngels, Ignition City, Fell, Black Summer
Holy. Crap. That's a lot of quality material!
What has he done that I don't know?: Dark Blue, Pryde and Wisdom, Hellstorm: Prince of Lies

Tell me 5 series that warrant him being on this Top Ten!:

1. Iron Man: Extremis
You know how good Extremis is? No? You ever seen the Iron Man movie? Yeah? Blame ALL of that on Extremis. This broke new ground with a character that had managed to stagnate for some time, bringing him not only into a new world but also turning him into the well characterised risk-taking futurist who eventually became the leader of the ill-fated Initiative movement. Pretty much everything Stark has done in recent years is because of this. AND it gave him a kickass armour. AND it was a great character analysis, delving into Stark and his intricacies. That and there's a great villain who's basically just a racist hick with more depth than you'll ever grant him. If you like Iron Man and haven't read this... Just... Fuck off.

2. Thunderbolts
This is worth speaking about not only because it warrants his position here but also because it shows that even when Warren Ellis is on amazing form it can still eventually piss me the hell off. Seriously. Ignoring the fact that this 12 issue run has some of the best characterisation of characters like Mac Gargan and Bullseye (and... *sigh* Norman Osborn) and an amazing set of plots (and has Jack Motherfuckin' Flag in it!), it changed a perfectly good, nay... A perfectly FUCKING AWESOME comic with one of my favourite characters in it; Baron Helmut Zemo. Sure he got his limited series whilst all this went on but nothing can make up for what Warren Ellis started. No, Warren Ellis is responsible for Diggle's Black Ops Bullshit(tm) (that I admittedly sometimes enjoy... up till Yelena turned out to not be Yelena) and whatever horrors may continue to appear instead of the Zemo redemption story that captivated me so much. So yes, you MUST read this. But not just because it's awesome. No, because it proves that brilliance can still ruin a perfectly good thing.

3. Nextwave: Agents of H.A.T.E.
This is just fucking insane. Nextwave... It's just... Insane. There's nothing I can really say. This is a comic where you get Machine Man cutting through Fin Fang Foom's stomach. This is a comic where you get a teddy bear hung from a noose in a flashback. This is a comic where the leader of a worldwide organisation tries to kill himself in extreme ways and wears a dress sometimes. THIS IS A FUCKING COMIC WHERE KOALAS ARE USED AS WEAPONRY AGAINST A TEAM OF DYSFUNCTIONAL SUPERHEROES WHO USUALLY FIGHT PEOPLE MADE OF BROCCOLI! THIS. IS. BUTTFUCK. INSANE!

And there's probably nothing that can EVER match up to it. This is Ellis' best. If you haven't read it YOU ARE A CUNT. In fact just fuck off you shit-shovelling lame comic reader.

Is he gone? Good I hate him. Let's move on.

4. Dark Blue
Okay, this one I'll forgive you not knowing about simply because I didn't until I bought it. It's a small work about a crazed cop in a corrupt world. Or is it? No, no it isn't. Turns out he's a traumatised FBI (or was it CIA. Teach me to not have it with me while I'm writing this) agent in a weird hospital thing where they get drugged up into the fucked up universe he's been in. In this drug world there's a dead mind roaming about killing people like a sick fucker, so our protagonist takes an overdose, starts dying and manipulates the universe and kills the psycho mind. Then dies. Poignant, powerful and a personal favourite of mine. You won't get short stories like this anymore simply because people are lazy. Find this, buy it, cherish it, then understand why Warren Ellis is number 3.

5. Ultimate Galactus Trilogy
Gah Lak Tus is an awesome name. That is all.

... OKAY OKAY! This is how you do alternate universe events, taking a concept from the main universe and making it completely fucking different. No-one has really understood this as much as Mr. Ellis and I doubt anyone will. I mean this is all basically new concepts and amazing plots that have nothing to do with 616 Galactus, but still captures a modern version of the essence. Warren Ellis surprised the shit out of me with this and it's the final evidence that Warren Ellis is the third best writer EVARR (that I know enough about).

[Final Category Removed Due To Pointlessness]

And that's the 3rd best writer. Next a review and #2 probably.

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