Suggested Reading: Mark Millar's Wanted - Curve the Bullet
by Roman Chavez
June 21, 2008
Super heroes. Super villains. The never-ending struggle. But what if that battle could end? The world would rejoice. No more bad guys endangering the innocent. People could walk the streets feeling safe, just enjoying life. But who's to say the heroes would win that fight? We always just assume that good prevails over evil. What would happen if the final battle was waged and the villains came out on top? Wanted answers that question. Published by Top Cow Productions, Wanted is a vision of a world where the big fight happened and the bad guys won. Not only do they win, but they either kill or horribly defeat the heroes and remake the world to their (The Fraternity's) specifications. And that's not even giving away the plot.
Jam-packed with action and vulgarity, this R-rated, mature comic book delivers on violence and dialogue. You will have to read it to believe some of the crazy shit that goes on in this book. In Wanted, we follow Wesley Gibson, your everyday run-of-the-mill working stiff. Bored with his life, job, and hating his two-timing girlfriend, Wesley wants something more out of life. Be careful what you wish for. He discovers that the father that abandoned him is actually the world's most feared and deadly assassin. Without giving away too much, the death of his father sets into motion events that will change Wesley's life forever.
I love this book! It's not set in any major comic book universe so you don't see any of your favorite heroes getting their butts handed to them and you are not conflicted with statements like "that wouldn't happen to Superman." It's definitely a guilty pleasure. Most of us always want the good guy to win and save the day, but deep down we would like to see the hero show up ten seconds too late. Some of the greatest moments of comic book history are tragic. What was also so cool about this comic series was that we got to see what some of the most powerful super villains do with their free time. How they relax, what they work on. Some seemed down that there were no great challenges anymore. It was just a very unique perspective of how villains would run things.
Now, the Wanted movie looks to be a bit tweaked. From the trailer we seem to get Wesley Gibson (James McAvoy) going about his business and day-to-day life when the character the Fox (Angelina Jolie), shows up and tells Wesley his father has died and is also the world's best assassin. I try to stay away from watching all the TV spots and viewing all the trailers online so that I don't get too much of the movie spoiled, but it seems that the Fraternity in this movie is a league of good assassins. "Kill one, save a thousand," I believe is the quote that Angelina Jolie's character says. This already is a huge difference from the comic book series but, honestly, I can see why.
The book is so over the top with its violence and villainy that if it were translated perfectly from comic to screen it may push the bounds of an NC-17 rating in my opinion. That would be great, but it's almost impossible to find a theater anymore that will show a film of that rating. This movie, however, is R-rated and I can totally see Hollywood throwing us a curve ball and revealing that these would-be "good assassins" are evil as all hell. But at the end of the day, Wanted has an all-star cast that I don't see could make out a bad film. The stunts in the few trailers that I have seen look amazing and everybody I know is excited about the film. Who likes assassins? I do!
I highly recommend this comic book. It sure is the way to break up your everyday comic book grid and really shakes up the super villain genre. You will want to ask yourself "is being evil really that bad?" Mark Millar writes some of the most realistic characters you have ever read. He makes you care about them even when they are evil S.O.B's. Matched with J.G. Jones' brilliant pencils, you have a winning combination. For all you villains out there, read the Wanted series. And the rest of you borderline heroes, check out Wanted in theaters next weekend. So long from Roman's Land and keep on reading.