Thursday, March 27, 2008

The Hundred Comic #90: Pressing the Strange/Uncanny button

I’ve probably mentioned this before - I get a kick out of seeing key images and covers reprinted in books and magazines. The other day I saw a bit of a dvd documentary which flashed various familiar comics pages and covers on the screen, and I felt the same buzz. There’s something about the new context which invigorates the well-worn image. Modernists might say it’s estrangement doing it’s stuff, and I’m sure that’s a critical dynamic playing itself out. Freudian analysts might cue The Twilight Zone theme as they invoke the uncanny, and I would have to concede a point there too.

The cover to The Hundred Comic #90 is another recent instance of this for me. A classic image in its own right, made strange and interesting in a new context, mainly by virtue of the new title (although I'm sure other minor differences such as the subtle colour adjustments play their role.)

I could add The Flash looks ‘faster’ in the Hundred version – the cropping of the image on the left hand side makes him appear to arrive more suddenly on the scene than in the original from The Flash #139 – but I consider that to be just a little variant bonus.

I now look forward to future unexpected, strange and uncanny instances of this image.