Monday, May 9, 2011

"Powers: Psychotic" - Ryan Stevens

1. Analyze: Idea - Primary

This book is obviously a crime drama/thiller. Like a comic book version of "Criminal Minds" or "Heroes", except with more swearing and violence. It is a story about a dark, sad, desperate city in which most of the characters feel lost, confused, and unhappy. It has a very "Sin City" or a darker "Gotham" feeling. There is little to no hope in their personalties or their actions. It's like they have all given up on progression and happiness and have conceded to living the sad, depressing lives they have made for themselves. They just conform and concede that these are there "lots" in life and there is nothing they can do about it. This makes for a lot of dramatic characters, events, and storyline. Desperation equals high drama. Everything they seem to do, even their conversations feel like life and death situations, as if their lives could be snuffed out at any minute. In this way the book is very successful. By the first page the reader should know exactly what they are getting into and what to expect in the coming pages. I also feel like the book is successful as a "Crime Drama", the characters and events pull you into the book's world aggressively. Even though I didn't love the book as a whole, I couldn't put it down until I was entirely finished with it in one sitting.

2. Rating: R/NC17

This graphic novel definately deserves the title of "graphic". It should definately be rated R if not NC17. The F bomb is dropped in the very first panel of the first page, it makes up most of the dialog of the first 6 pages, and it is continuely used throughout the entire trade, along with every other obsenity. There is graphic violence and bloodshed, including a detailed depiction of a man's tougue that has been pulled from his mouth. There is murder, betrayal, adultery, and deception throughout. There are sexual insinuations, sexual themes, and nudity. suffice it to say I wouldn't show it to anyone under 18 and it is not a book for the faint of heart.

3. Springboard:

Brian Michael Bendis would definately need to know how the inner workings of the law enforcement profession are done. How detectives and partners work together. What the normal procedures are for investigating murders and other crimes, what is involved in searching a crime scene, and how they are set up. He should have useable knowledge of police lingo, jargen and slang. As well as police codes and what they stand for.
I was interested in knowing more about police codes and what each three digit number meant so I googled the subject and found some pretty interesting stuff. I already knew that 187 stood for murder, I have seen enough movies to know that. but I wondered what others might be. Here are some examples I found: 213 - Use of illegal explosives, 288 - Lewd conduct, 311 - Indecent exposure, 419 - Dead human body, 510 - Speeding or racing vehicles.

4. Apply

Bendis uses his knowledge of the dramtic lives of those that serve and protect civilians as law enforment officers to setup the background of the characters, events, and story throughout the novel. The depressing, shocking and graphic scenes that they are force to witness everyday throughout their careers and how that affects them as a character and the lives they live outside of their profession. I can use this technique in my own novels to pull readers into the story and make my characters more believeable as well as the world the live in. This will help persuade the readers to care about my characters more and feel more of a connection to them as a human being.


  1. I think I might disagree with Milieu as the primary. Nothing in your description really points out any characteristics of Milieu. It actually points more to one of the other three.

  2. ... so, regarding your part 1, either switch out milieu or the description.

  3. I love your research BTW. I love it whenever I get to learn new things from student's research.