Art from ‘The Private Eye’ (2013) by Marcos Martin & Muntsa Vicente. Dialogue by Brian K. Vaughan.
Gobbledygeek episode 391, “Four-Color Flashback: The Private Eye,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
The Cloud burst, and for forty days and forty nights, all of our secrets rained down. In the not terribly distant future world of Brian K. Vaughan, Marcos Martin, and Muntsa Vicente’s 2013-15 series The Private Eye, the Internet is a distant memory and anonymity is now the foundation of American society. Of course, our hero is an amoral paparazzo-slash-private investigator whose job is to dig up those old secrets; of course, this leads him into a world of trouble. For the penultimate Four-Color Flashback of 2019, Paul and Arlo discuss Vaughan’s clever utilization of noir tropes in the post-Internet age, Martin’s dynamic pencils/inks, Vicente’s eye-popping colors (this is one noir that doesn’t hide in the shadows), their radical pay-what-you-want self-publishing platform Panel Syndicate, and the big philosophical question at the heart of the book: is the Internet worth it?
Next: for the final Four-Color Flashback of the season, we get existential with Fabio Moon and Gabriel Ba’s Daytripper.
Total Run Time: 01:31:30
- 00:00:22 – Intro
- 00:04:10 – Main Topic
- 01:27:00 – Outro / Next
- “Private Eyes” by Daryl Hall & John Oates, Private Eyes (1981)
- “This Masquerade” by The Carpenters, Now & Then (1973)
‘Saga’ art by Fiona Staples.
Last week, we brought you our top 10 films of the year. It was different from past years in that while I still wrote words and words and words, Paul presented his list without comment. He continues that trend with his top 10 comics of 2014. Meanwhile, I’m getting into some unusual territory by admitting that I don’t have a list. Sure, I could have scraped something together, but it wouldn’t have felt right.
I adore comic books–look no further than the year-long Four-Color Flashback series on Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman we just wrapped in December–but this was the year they unfortunately fell by the wayside of my pop culture habits. There are a few reasons: comics are expensive, often going for $2.99, $3.99, or even more for a bundle of 20-25 sheets of paper; reading is a solitary, time-consuming activity which requires laser focus, unlike a lot of movies and TV (I’ll probably get in trouble for that), and this year I chose to devote much more of my reading time to prose; and lately, I’ve grown to prefer sitting down with one-and-done graphic novels or trade paperback collections to only getting a single hit of a story each month.
Then there’s the fact that 2014 was the year I (and Paul, and frenemy of the show Eric Sipple) published a book. I’ve always considered myself a creative person, but actually putting blood, sweat, and tears into finishing a real product available for purchase left me with a lot less free time. Video games were the first casualty–I played the very comics-oriented LEGO Marvel Superheroes for a few days, but that was about it–and then, completely by chance, I noticed comics becoming the second. Which is ironic, considering how heavily indebted The Deli Counter of Justice is to superhero comics.