Monday, December 31, 2007

The Worst Lines of 2007


The beauty of the comics medium is that it is one that marries the written word and the drawn image, and the ratio between the two can always be adjusted, so that one can always do a little more work than the other when it comes to telling a story.

In other words, lines like those below could easily be avoided—and should have been. Here are the most laugh-out-loud terrible sentences, some originally delivered in dialogue others in narration, by some of the industry's most popular and successful writers this year...


“Now close your eyes, gentlemen. This might hurt.

—Mark Millar, Civil War #6



“He’s going to die because that’s what people do. It’s humanity’s shared super-power. We die.”

—Greg Rucka and friends, 52 #36



“You’re the first person ever…to get a second chance… to make a first impression.”

—Paul Jenkins, Civil War: The Return #1



"Just because you can fly-- --doesn't mean you're not in a cage"

—Brad Meltzer, Justice League of America #7



“Nobody would want to see what I saw. Don’t you get it? It was-- The Death of Captain America.”

—Jeph Loeb, Fallen Son—The Death of Captain America #1



“I don’t know who you are, lady-- --but you’ve just awoken the hawk!

—Gail Simone, Birds of Prey #105



“Tune your ear to the frequency of despair, and cross reference by the longitude and latitude of a heart in agony.

Listen.

Listen.”

—J. Michael Straczynski, Amazing Spider-Man #544



Those days gave way to more days for these heroes…hard traveled.

—Judd Winick, Green Arrow/Black Canary Wedding Special #1

7 comments:

Tony said...

JMS wrote that? I would expect better from the mastermind of "Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors."

Anonymous said...

Aside from the JMS quote, those aren't necessarily bad and largely depend on the context. I know that many of them read poorly in context, but your point of how terrible they are isn't well made by taking them out of context.

Scott said...

I've always wondered about how comics get lettered, especially when I see kinda random words bolded or italicized like that.

Does the writer put that emphasis in the script? Does the letterer decide which words need more oomph? What is the bolded word supposed to express? Is it a shouted word(and if it is, why not just use an exclamation point?)?

It's bothered me because about four times out of five, if you try to read the balloon out loud the bolded emphasis makes very little sense. When I'm reading a novel, I never see randomly bolded words expressing some sort of dubious importance. Why does that happen in comics?

Shaun said...

How did Batman's remark about the bees not make the list?

Anonymous said...

Because that line was PERFECT.

Anonymous said...

"Does the writer put that emphasis in the script?"

Yep.

Caleb said...

Aside from the JMS quote, those aren't necessarily bad and largely depend on the context. I know that many of them read poorly in context, but your point of how terrible they are isn't well made by taking them out of context.

I don't know, I'd be ashamed to have my name attached to any of those sentences in just about any context (the Millar one would be fine if it were delivered by, say, an ambidextrous doctor). But you're right, they're all much, much worse in their proper context.


Does the writer put that emphasis in the script?

In the scripts I've seen, it seems like the writer puts them there. It is a weird kinda comic book thing though. You see italics in prose, but less frequently. I would theorize it may be leftover from the old days of comics making, when the creators assumed people were kinda skimming them, but I don't know; it rarely seems to actually add anything.


How did Batman's remark about the bees not make the list?

Maybe it's just me, but I think the bees line was stupid enough to qualify as totally awesome. Particularly out of context. Because to experience it in context, you'd have to read Amazons Attack.