Saturday, July 07, 2007

Is This Gratuitous? Dust #1 Variant Cover

Dust #1 Variant Cover
Originally uploaded by Heidi Meeley
In looking for this weeks' gratuitous candidate, my hubby stumbled upon this interesting cover. I find that we are once again exploring the joys of hot chicks with guns, which is a popular theme in comics with an action slant.

The first thing I notice when looking at this cover is the expression on said woman's face as she lovingly toys with her weapon. Secondly, I am drawn to her impressive rack, which is quite perky and large at the same time. Then I notice the selling point of all selling points: nipples. Kids, Farrah Fawcett's 1970's poster didn't sell out for nothing!

This is a new book from Image Comics, and here is the information about it:

"FC JULY 5 * $3.99 It's THE DIRTY DOZEN versus robots, zombies and more! Jump into battle as the Allies and the Sino-Soviet Union join forces to fight the evil Axis; a powerful group (Germany, Japan and Africa) whose plans to dominate the world are bolstered by their amazing weapons - built using alien technology taken from a crashed space ship. Paolo Parente and mink have created a seamless blend of historical events and cutting edge Sci-Fi to bring you DUST - a groundbreaking World War II adventure! Writer mink is a feature film and MTV music video director who has worked with Snoop Dogg, Slum Village, Sheryl Crow and many more. Parente's art style was molded in the fashion world as Versace's lead illustrator, before turning his skills towards graphic novel covers, World of Warcraft art, Magic the Gathering trading cards & toy design. MTV VIDEO DIRECTOR, mink LOOKS TO CONQUER COMICS WITH THIS SURREALISTIC SCI-FI MASTERPIECE! This book will ship with a 1-for-10 variant cover by Paolo Parente. RETAILER WARNING: MAY NOT BE SUITABLE FOR ALL AGES"

Wow. Quite a resume this guy has! Are any of you planning to pick this book up? What have you heard about it?

Last but not least, is this gratuitous?


Siskoid said...

We're all used to guns and cleavage, whatever, but where it gets truly gratuitous is with the butt crack.

Gordon D said...

I have to say "gratuitous"...mostly because, when I look at that woman's pose, it reminds me of nude photos of a woman lying on, say, a bearskin rug.

Plus, is it just me, or does her chest kinda stick out abnormally?

Lisa said...

"may not be suited for all ages" - yeah, I can see that!

I'm going with definitely gratuitous on this one. We've got nipples, we've got ass cracks, we've got the sultry facial expression as she strokes the phallic symbol. It's the trifecta of gratuitous covers. Shouldn't she be kind of cold and uncomfortable with her midriff exposed on the ground/snow?

The writer is MINK - who has no experience in comics but is cool anyway because he's worked with MTV and big stars like Snoop Dog. YIKES! This screams of bad. I could be wrong, but there are a LOT of warning signs that this book is on the rocket sled to the quarter bin.

John Holland said...

I agree with Lisa, everything about this cover screams gratuitous. From her "stroking" the gun to...well just everything. You know some covers can be gratuitous in a good way and some are just wrong. I'd have to put this one in the wrong bin, it's just too over the top.

Carl said...

Hmmmmmmm, looks kind of painful to me. Like, strrrrrretch the neck and back and thrust those babies out! And that's a flaregun, not a firearm unless I'm mistaken. Gratuitous, yeah just a nippley bit...

Heidi Meeley said...

I love you guys! You made my day when I read the comments.

The butt crack does indeed bring it on home, John.

Gordon, her chest is way unnatural. They didn't come from God, I can tell you that much! Heh.

Lisa, Jim loved your comment! Too true. Just because a person excels at one kind of medium doesn't mean they will automatically excel in another!

Good point on the fire arm, Carl!

The vote seems official: It is gratuitous!

Verge said...

Gratuitous and not for children but well-drawn & with a conscious eye towards excess & parody.

Justin said...

It definitely is gratuitous, but I still like it.

Also made me say "Hey, Paolo Parente, I know him from Magic!"

Lea said...

Blech. Another fabulous contribution to the genre of "nearly naked when ostensibly fully-clothed." If she is wearing a coat with a fur-lined hood and gloves, she must be outside in the cold. But if it's cold, why is she baring her midriff, part of her ass and an improbably amount of cleavage?

bunny mazonas said...

Yeah, definitely gratuitous. It's the whole thing together, though, I think.

Girls with guns? Can look dangerous and sexy at the same time, which I like.

But look at her pose. They took a "pretty little girly playing with her dolly" pose (wiggling legs, coyly hunched shoulders, up-thrusted butt) and then decided that the little girly was playing army dress-up.

Also, the vacant, pouty expression. She doesn't look like she actually knows what she's doing with a gun, but rather she has never seen one before, just found daddy's gun in the cupboard and is playing with it.

And yeah, I could forgive the boobs, but the arse is awful. Aren't camos supposed to be loose-fitting and comfortable? That looks like either the world's most painful wedge/muffin-butt combo, or spray-painted trousers with a belt.

She looks... weak. And the clothes look like they drew an underwear model and then tacked the clothes on afterwards, trying to keep as much jubbly showing as possible.

Damnit! I want good cheesecake!

skullduggery said...

Just wait until you see the cover for the second issue.

Marionette said...

Heidi, it's usually not that hard to judge whether a cover is gratuitous: if it accurately represents the contents of the comic, then no, it's not gratuitous, it's just cheesecake.

Heidi Meeley said...

Wow, once again I appreciate the feedback! I am awed by your insights.

This was an interesting cover in that it tends to be what it is to the beholder. That is what I have found about this feature. Some weeks I feel pretty unsure about the general reaction while in other weeks, I am taken by surprise.

It is amazing to see the variety of POV's, and I learn so much each week.

Thank you again!

bellatrys said...

Wow, that's some bad anatomy drawing! If I get the time, i will do a redraw on it like I did with the MJ statue, to show just how deformed she is, altho' in this case it's more that her hips and legs are made out of a deflated balloon, than the ginormousness of her bust-waist ratio (which is kind of amazing, really.)

But hey, the combination of clothing/hair lines and the distraction of T&A can camouflage a multitude of draughtsmanship sins...

Heidi Meeley said...

Bellatrys, you said it. I can't add anything more. :-)

Unknown said...

It's not a bad drawing, really... but the buttocks region and her thighs are tilted strangely, almost like she's lying on an uneven surface.

I'm guessing this is so we can get a full-on view of her crack.

Definitely gratuitous. I've read some stuff about "Dust" (I like alternate history stuff with WWII continuing with retro-futuro technology and zombies are also a draw) and I think she's some sort of main character/soldier type dealy...

If so, and the world is at war, when does she find time to lounge around half-naked caressing a gun?

A lot of women fought in the Soviet Army during WWII and I seriously doubt any of them found downtime- much less had the inclination- for doing that kind of stuff.

So for taking a character out of context to involve her in extra-narrative cheesecakery, this gets the label "gratuitous."

Oh... and I'm with Lisa. "Mink?" Some video director writing a comic? I guess the qualification for writing comics these days is having done anything BUT write a comic book.

Unknown said...

Oops... I should've looked closer! She's wearing a 101st Airborne patch so she's NOT the Soviet character I thought she was!

Still gratuitous though.