Monday, March 28, 2016

Review of "Flash Gordon: The Fall of Ming," by Alex Raymond

Review of

Flash Gordon: The Fall of Ming, by Alex Raymond ISBN 9780857686886

Five out of five stars

 No one did the quality of drawing in the comics better than Alex Raymond. Facial expressions, creases in the clothing and accurate perspective transformations between the fore and background were all drawn to the highest standards.
 While the storylines were often taken from current events with the rise of fascism around the world, (the image of Ming’s military commander on the front cover is a double for German general Erich Ludendorff) there was also a great deal of originality in the storylines. Many different humanoids of the planet Mongo are introduced and are allies and opponents of Flash, Dale and Zarkov.
 Ming is overthrown very early in the book and when they learn that the United States is in danger of being defeated by the fascistic Red Sword, Flash and company build a ship and fly back to Earth. Once the onslaught of the Red Sword is defeated, they then fly back to Mongo in order to procure more radium for the war effort. When there, they are embroiled in the endless battles for power that are endemic to Mongo.
 This is a very lengthy story where in true hero fashion Flash cheats death over and over again. It is a look back to a time when the hero did not fly, was not capable of repelling bullets or had no other mighty powers. Flash was a hero that led from the front, inspiring his followers to great efforts in the pursuit of freedom and liberty.

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