Tuesday, 14 September 2010


New comigazine CLiNT "hit the news stands" this month, boasting comic strips from Jonathan Ross and Frankie Boyle, as well as a side-splitting playground-humour title. Hee hee! From a distance it looks like - you know - that word! Maybe that's why it didn't get a mention on BBC News, although it should have done for this strip alone:

Yes, it came out weeks ago, and no, it's not a film, but I mention it because it's aiming itself at the movie geek audience with editor Mark Millar's Kick-Ass 2 strip, as well as the likes of articles about people who dub Cruise and DiCaprio for foreign markets and an interview with man of the moment (three years ago) McLovin'. It even got its own trailer, although zero effort was put into that:

The bits that aren't comics aren't up to much - items like "Top Five Weird Things Real People Have Shouted During Sex" and "Top Ten Hot TV Mums" hardly break new ground, and an entire page about a day in the life of a pot-smoker is as tedious and childish as it sounds.

CLiNT's big selling point is the Ross and Boyle material, so why there aren't interviews with them about their love of comics and how they came to write their own is a mystery. As is the lacklustre cover - Millar's editorial compares CLiNT to Eagle and 2000 AD, but have a look at their front pages:

2000 AD's first cover from 1977 might essentially look like a blue toilet roll, but it does feature the words "SPACE-AGE DINOSAURS!" and "STOP PRESS! GREAT BRITAIN INVADED!" Also, hello, FREE SPACE SPINNER!

Issue 1 of the relaunched Eagle in 1982 boasted The Mekon sitting in a flying bath, phallic rockets and, hello, a FREE SPACE SPINNER!

The first issue of CLiNT gives us a man with a ginger beard, some dull fonts and, upsettingly, NO FREE SPACE SPINNER.

So what about the comicy bits? Well, Kick-Ass 2 is eight pages long and stops just as it gets going; Ross' vampires-vs-gangsters-vs-aliens-in-prohibition-era-New-York bloodbath Turf is entertaining but essentially derivative of all those genres, and Boyle's Rex Royd is baffling but promising. It's Millar's other offering Nemesis that proves the most readable and thrilling, and the opening scenes of massive carnage must already have 20th Century Fox wondering how they're going to afford to pull off Tony Scott's big-screen adaptation.

Given that Turf, Nemesis and (eventually) Kick-Ass 2 are all available separately, CLiNT comes across as little more than a sampler for those titles. Millar's offer to publish new talent is admirable, although judging by Issue One it'll be relegated to three pages at the back while the celebs get the lion's share of space.

So having compounded the problem by giving CLiNT more free publicity, I recommend Issue Two ditches all the content apart from Kick-Ass 2 and gives a few non-celebrity writers a chance to tell their stories.

But will that happen? WILL IT FLiCK.

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