asymmetrical's DMZ #56 - Collective Punishment, Part 2: Ghost Protector review

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Kowtow Indeed, Kowtow Indeed

You know, as much as I love Brian Wood (Northlanders, Demo, Demo - Volume II, DV8: Gods and Monsters, Local), his "epic" DMZ has always been a hit-or-miss series for me. I suppose the problem I find with DMZ is it's Brian Wood doing something different. In all the titles of his I've read apart from this he has never chosen to establish an entire world on as grand a scale as this. In fact three of the five comics I listed above are all one-shot self-contained stories and another is one-shots and/or short arcs. Therefore, it is only natural to assume, a 50+ issue series all focusing around the same set of characters is a different Brian then we've seen before.
However, take comfort in knowing he hasn't completely thrown away the one-shot story style he's grown famous for, whilst building an interesting story centering around the journey of a young man named Matty Roth in the NYC De-Militarized Zone...he still doesn't let us forget about the people who actually live in the city. Now, to be perfectly honest this can be both negative and positive.
On the one hand, when almost half the issues of a two year period are unrelated to the main character's story, keeping up with what's going on can at times be difficult and progression can seem almost non-existent. While, on the positive end of things, you have to admit Wood is great at giving us a look into a "secondary" character for one powerful issue. And as far as secondary characters go, the focus of this one -Wilson- is one of my favorites in the DMZ and this issue did not disappoint to show him at his best.
So in conclusion, I find DMZ a much more interesting story when you read it from beginning to end...but the issues like this are great stand-alone reads if you don't feel ready to commit to the entire title. Therefore, if you are a fan of Brian Wood, Chinatown, or old people...check this out!

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