Empress and Reborn cover details

Pipeline #1044: It’s Millarworld Time

Mark Millar is well known for one thing lately: Creating mini-series with top name comic book artists that get sold to Hollywood before the first issue hits stands.

Needless to say, this colors those books in many a reader’s mind.  The world of comics is littered with failed screenplays turned into “graphic novels” for the sake of putting together a better pitch document for the writer.  Often, they don’t even make it past an issue or two.

Millar is the best there is at using that system to tell his stories.

It also leads to him getting a bad rap occasionally, for things that people seem to misunderstand.


Three Act Structure versus Comic Book Mini-Series

In the letters page of an issue of “Empress,” a writer mentions that he thought the first issue of the series was just the first act of a movie and was glad things started happening with the second issue.

That reader is a bit short-sighted, I would argue.

What he describes is  just a classic three act story structure placed on top of a comic book mini-series.  Much in the same way, the last issue is most likely to be a gigantic set piece with all of the characters together facing off in a way that there’s no way the hero can win, but after taking a small beating most likely will win.

This isn’t rocket science.  It’s just satisfying storytelling.

For more information, just read this classic tome:

In this column, originally published June 19, 2017, I review both “Empress” and “Reborn.” The two mini-series from the last year are entertaining in their own right, though I’d argue “Reborn” is the better comic for reasons I lay out in the column.

Either way, you can’t go wrong with two books drawn by Stuart Immonen and Greg Capullo.  That’s some good looking stuff right there.


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1 Comment

  • dancondonjones June 28, 2017 at 5:56 pm

    Peter Doherty’s art that I saw in American comics never quite gelled, but some of the work he did in 2000ad and athe Megazine was gorgeous. It makes me a bit sad that he’s lettering now rather than drawing comics.


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