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Eternals by Neil Gaiman
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Eternals (2006)

by Neil Gaiman, John Romita, Jr. (Illustrator)

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I knew nothing about Eternals before reading this, and pretty much just got it because it's by Neil Gaiman. So I didn't know about the original series (and still don't know much about it). Some of the character designs and ideas are kinda cool, and the art works well enough, but I don't think Gaiman managed to rescue this from the wtfery of its apparent origins.

The longer he drew out the mystery, the better it was; all the explanation was kinda... this is what you were setting up for? Really?

I don't think this works well in a world with registration and Civil War and Tony Stark, either. ( )
  shanaqui | Apr 12, 2014 |
Neil Gaiman takes on one of Jack Kirby's creations for Marvel.

Despite the fact that these are two very big names, the biggest reaction I can muster is "meh". It was okay, but there was nothing that really grabbed me about it. Gaiman and the artist managed to squeeze the Kirbyishness out of it, without imparting anything particularly great or new.

It was okay, but that's about it. Nothing about it was particularly memorable; it didn't stay in my mind. In a fractional system I guess I'd give it a 2.5. ( )
  PMaranci | Apr 3, 2013 |
I liked it a lot, i had to look through it again after I had finished it to understand it, but i still liked it a lot. He takes the Kirby story, which from interviews it seems he did not think were fully realized and a little shoddy, and created very real characters that just happen to be between half a million and one million years old (age-wise) ( )
  stipe168 | May 3, 2012 |
So, here's Neil Gaiman's take on Jack Kirby's Eternals, in which alien space gods have created humanoid super-custodians for terrestrial life, themselves understood as deities by traditional polytheistic cultures. Readers could be forgiven for assuming that American Gods author Gaiman would focus on the characters' altar-egos (that's a pun, not a misspelling) as the gods of Olympus, Valhalla, etc., but that's exactly what he doesn't do. Instead, he creates a "reboot" scenario in which the Eternals have been deceived into thinking that they are human, and have forgotten what they knew about the Celestials and the deep history of Earth; and then he uses their process of anamnesia to portray a spectrum of attitudes from the conflicted human to the puissant and impeccable Eternal.

Gaiman cleverly works in a fair amount of Lovecraftian lore, in a hybrid with Kirby's von Daniken plot-basis, and he gives the Deviants some self-respect as the "Changing People." The plot integration with Marvel's Civil War cross-title "event" was a little annoying to me, but part of Gaiman's challenge was to integrate the outlier Eternals with the "Marvel Universe," and he seems to have succeeded, at least as far as he took it.

The art by John Romita Jr. (JRJR) is often anatomically obtuse--a good example comes in a page-top panel toward the end of the book, in which Thena's right foot looks like she's wearing a clown shoe. But that's actually in keeping with the Kirby spirit. As Gaiman observes of Kirby in an appended interview: "My little ten-year-old brain would go, 'Fire doesn't look like that!" and then you look at his women and go, 'Women don't look like that!'" So, like what Gaiman calls the "Kirbyverse," JRJR manages to offer a coherent visual idiom with its own power. His panoramic images of prehistoric epic are especially fine.

The production values for this edition are positively splendid: a nearly folio-sized hardcover with a sturdy dustjacket, full-process color on glossy paper, and a set of appendices including the aforementioned interview, alternate cover illustrations, preliminary character sketches, Gaiman's proposal for the series, and an essay about the original Eternals title.
2 vote paradoxosalpha | Mar 11, 2011 |
Kicks off great, then slows down and simmers to an un-ending. ( )
  dst | Nov 21, 2010 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Neil Gaimanprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Romita, John, Jr.Illustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
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On a good night--no interstate pile-ups, no knife-wielding crazies--by five-thirty in the morning the hospital gets quiet.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0785125418, Hardcover)

You are thousands of years old. You have amazing powers. You have watched civilizations rise and fall. So why does no one remember any of this? Bestselling Author Neil Gaiman (Marvel: 1602, Anansi Boys, Sandman) is joined by superstar artist John Romita Jr. (Amazing Spider-Man, Wolverine) to present a tale that will change the Eternals and the Marvel Universe forever! Collects Eternals #1-7.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:33:06 -0400)

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Follows the adventures of the Eternals as they awake one by one from a strange dream and must come to terms with the fact that they are not ordinary people.

» see all 3 descriptions

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