Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Almost Twelve!

Chris Weston

The Twelve from Mighty Marvel has to be one of the grandest eggs ever laid in comics. It was in fact the series that convinced me finally at last to give up on mainstream comics and just dabble in vintage reprints and whatnot. The series by Michael Stracynksi and artist Chris Weston began with great promise. It was the Weston artwork ultimately that got me to give the series a try despite Stracynksi's spotty rep with deadlines.


The story is not that novel really at this point, but it was the characterization that drove it. Twelve WWII era heroes get packed away for decades and when they are released into the modern world they have some difficulties adjusting. It was sort of like twelve variations on the classic Captain America myth.

That's a decent premise, but after eight issues (with a few oddball extras thrown in) the series ground to a halt uncompleted. And in the years since, despite some rumours to the contrary, it has remained unfinished. It seems now at long last Weston himself will attempt to bring it to a conclusion, though I'll actually believe that when I see it in actual stores. Whatever the case, the series left a bad taste in my mouth and hastened my exit from mainstream comics.


But there were virtues to The Twelve, not least of them was the charming cover artwork above by Chris Weston for the zero issue. As I've said many times, I love covers that feature other comics and this one showcasing Daring Mystery Comics #3 is a gem.

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3 comments:

  1. Rip, I've done several posts over the years about "The Twelve"fiasco.

    In fact, one such post prompted Chris Weston to email me privately to clear up a misconception on my part. I appreciated his taking the time to share a bit of behind the scenes drama over how and why the project was falling by the wayside, and although he asked that I not repeat specific aspects of the situation, it still rankles me that the book has remained incomplete.

    Joe Quesada may spin this ridiculous bullshit scenario seven ways from Sunday, but Joe Straczynksi permanently lost me as a fan after literally shelving this fan-favorite project to pursue other work, and I will not purchase anything else that he works on. That after having been a huge fan of Babylon 5, is unfortunate to me.

    I don't know where you heard that Chris is going to be allowed to finish the final four issues, but I certainly hope that proves to be accurate. He demonstrated the talent to do so in the "Spearhead"one-shot, so why the hell has Marvel been dragging their heels on this?

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  2. I'd say Marvel saw how Project SuperPowers was doing and thought..."We can do that!"
    Turns out they couldn't.
    I hope Weston does finish the series. Like you, I liked the premise and the art, though some of the plot developments were less than enthralling.
    They're trying again, this time going the "Roy Thomas-retro-continuity" route with Mystery Men (not to be confused with Bob Burden's MysteryMen) set in the 1930s-40s!

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  3. Chuck - I've seen reports here and there, those most recent just a few months back saying Weston was still planning to finish it on his own. But as usual there's always other work that seems to take precedence. At least he seems to take the criticism that the series never finished to heart. Stracynski truly doesn't seem to give a hoot. These types of projects often have to fight the deadline doom all the time anyway, but to never ever finish it is just too much.

    Britt - Like I said, I'm off new Marvel by and large, so that series had slipped past me. I won't be getting it. Maybe a trade eventually on this stuff if they ever get them together, but no more floppy comics from the Big Two for me by and large.

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