(from War Stories: Condors by Garth Ennis and Carlos Ezquerra)
One of my favorite Ennis stories.
Despite Ennis getting the history horribly wrong, this is my second-favourite of his stories. Oddly enough, it’s the Irish history he gets wrong — and he gets it horribly, ridiculously, laughably wrong, which makes it all the more telling that I still love this story. The central point is true enough, and is executed well enough, that the missteps don’t matter.
Probably my favorite of the War stories, (The second being about Easy Company) Ennis has a real flair when he has a small group of people gathered together in one place.
I’m curious Katherine – what exactly was it about the Irish history he got wrong? I find it strange that he would have made a major slip-up given how much he values his research into war.
That might be why his works seem so foreign to the S-hero crowd – his stories are really thinly-veiled War stories. Think about it – every one of his stories have featured at least one Army guy. And where there weren’t military personel, there were subtle references. The infected in Crossed were really hyper-amped Army soldiers.
Of course, if we’re talking about influental War Comics, you can’t get any better than Charlie’s War, written by Pat Mills and drawn by Joe Colquhoun. Widely considered the best WWI comic ever made.
The Communist’s Sergeant in that image above? He’s practically a ringer for Sergeant Bill Tozer in Charley’s War.
I’ve only read The Reivers – Who Dares Wins…but Garth never fails to entertain.
I’ve never seen this, but I knew it was Ennis from the moment I read “Jaysis” in panel 2.
Ennis’ various hangups tend to ruin his fiction for me. I suspect I’d find an Ennis war story grating.
What irks you about getting an accent down? Especially one that Ennis would be familiar with?
Say what you will about Garth Ennis the writer, but his ear for dialect is second to none (at least in comics). For an Irishman, he’s got the differences of American regional speech patterns DOWN–rural Mississippi, Georgian gentry, Midwest flat-tone, SoCal burble, East Texas shitkicker and West Texas good ole boy. It’s not just pronunciation, it’s speech pattern, pace, and word choice. I can’t speak to how accurate his British accents are, but in his work I can hear the differences between Brummie and Manc and posh and the two Irelands.
A wonderful story that falls into tiny little fragments the second you ask the question “What language were they speaking?”
The accent doesn’t irk me; sorry if that was unclear. It’s just a marker. Ennis uses accents a lot.
What irks me is stuff like the Hard Man worship (along with the idea that real moral choices have to be Hard), the fascination with the transformative power of violence, and the idea that Ennis’ particular view of (for instance) the Troubles is necessarily right and true. Those set my teeth on edge, a bit.
I don’t get it.
I think this is meant to be a “fuck you, Tim O’Neil” post.
Not even a little bit. I don’t agree with Tim’s recent thoughts on Ennis at all, but his posts are never kneejerk and always thoughtful.
It’s entirely plausible that they all speak English (German pilots in particular learned it more frequently than other branches of the Army, and that only leaves the Spaniard as a bit of a stretch) or French (which was a lingua franca for most of Europe until the mid-20th century when English took over that job – only the Irish fascist seems a bit of a stretch there).
You know, if it wasn’t for Ennis, I’d never know who Carlos Ezquerra was, and I’m forever grateful.
Can’t be French–the slipup the English Communist made SPOILER WARNING
referring to the Irish fascist as a “bog trotter” (or something along those lines, been awhile since I read it) wouldn’t happen to someone not speaking their native language. I suppose that both the German and the Spaniard might have picked up English, (I think the Spaniard is supposed to be fairly well-traveled) but it’s quite a stretch.
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