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Authority, The: Relentless Paperback – May 1, 2000
Deluxe graphic novels
Premium editions of classic titles including "Preacher," "The Sandman," and more. Learn more
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Top Customer Reviews
Yet the attempt to add meaning can become portentious or simply pretentious. Over-complex characterization can result in intermindable soap operas that go nowhere. And sometimes, you just want to "kick it" (in both senses of the phrase). In this sense, Warren Ellis & Bryan Hitch's twelve issue run on The Authority (the first 8 of which are reprinted here) represents a breath of fresh air. Yes, it helps to have read Stormwatch, but then it helps to have read Batman before reading JLA. Ellis does introduce interesting ideas & character development; but he does so in a piecemeal fashion the better to keep the emphasis on the action. And for once it's worth it.
People called The Authority, "the JLA (or the Avengers) finally done right," and I have to agree. Ellis & Hitch do it so well! Realistic cinematic art with a touch of grandeur, incredible world-shattering threats, Jenny Sparks "appallingly bad attitude," and a group willing and able to force change on a global scale, not just to neutralize the enemy but to build "a finer world" whatever the vested interests arrayed against them. It's been a wild ride and great fun to boot: the comic book equivalent of a really well made summer blockbuster action movie. Turn off your brain and give it a try. (Again) for once, it's worth it.
Although this series spawned off the earlier 'Stormwatch' title, you needn't be too familiair with it. Knowledge about what happened in Stormwatch is a pre, not a must. It's not like you'll miss out on anytthing vital in here if you haven't read it, only you'll know some more on the back-ground of SOME characters if you have (not all).
This first collection collects #1-8 of the series, which are basically divided in two four-part sub-plots (the complete Warren Ellis run/storyline goes on for another four issues in the second volume, along with the first four Mark Millar-written issues).
The first sub-arc is called "The Circle". A dictator/tyrant ruler of the island called 'Gamorra' is trying to put his mark on the rest of the world in a rather brutal, unconventional way. It's up to the top-secret global defensive group "Authority" to put him to a stop. In this arc the group is forming and deciding who it's members are gonna be. It's mostly used as an explanation to the reader who the characters, led by Jenny Sparks, are and what they are about (powers, a little background and such).
The second story-arc is called "Shiftships". Earth is under attack by creatures from an alternative earth. Jenny Sparks knows these creatures (half humans) from her past, but she was convinced they were long dead. The question is how to stop them, but luckily Jenny has an ace up her sleeve which should give her group a fair chance.Read more ›
"Relentless" collects the first eight issues of Warren Ellis' run on The Authority, along with the efforts of his visual collaborators Bryan Hitch (who has come a long way since his uuuugly fill-in days on Uncanny X-Men), Paul Neary and Laura DePuy. Warren said it: "for twelve issues, we were the f***ing Beatles". That they were. Hitch's exquisite detail in each and every splash page is simultaneously epic and romantic, but also in-your-face visceral. But it'd all amount to nothing if not for the beautiful color job by DePuy, who has turned computer coloring into an essential element of the storytelling.
There are those who criticize that Authority lacks in characterization and while these arguments do carry weight, these people plainly fail to realize one thing: superhero comics are not soap operas. This is a fact that seems to have been forgotten so much over the years of superhero comics, that the original intent of the genre has been lost: these are meant to be stories of action and wonder. If you're looking for Watchmen or Dark Knight Returns or any kind of deep, subtle, literary masterpiece ... look elsewhere (like Ellis' Planetary). If you want to see a 70-foot-tall woman made of electricity destroy a fleet of fighter jets from a parallel Britain... come on in.
Besides, these heroes' personalities are so potent that, when they get a good one-liner in, it counts for so much more than balloons of pedantic dialogue in another title. The words are sharp, and so are these heroes.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I miss the "Approved by the Comics Code" sticker.
Inventive and well drawn, the Authority is a comic for mature readers -- adult readers -- and not for children. Read more
Okay so here's the thing: The Authority is terrible. What has long been advertised as Warren Ellis' "complex" tail of morally bankrupt superhumanity and the nature of power... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Daniel Monaco
And interesting read that leaves you thinking. I'm not sure whether I like it or hate it just yet.Published 16 months ago by Rikki (kidofburden)
I really enjoyed "The Authority" Volume 1. It is a well told story with good art and a very interesting world. But "The Authority" volume 2 is just terrible. Read morePublished on June 11, 2013 by Mark Locy
While not quite as good as Planetary, the books that introduced me to Warren Ellis, The Authority was well written, both in terms of plot and dialogue, and the art was exactly as... Read morePublished on August 5, 2012 by brian kemp
If you've got a yen for bombast, then this is where you get your kicks. In a world bereft of heroes and saviors, oh what to do when a horde of superpowered terr0rists begins to... Read morePublished on July 10, 2012 by H. Bala
Collects issues 1-8 of The Authority.
The art is fantastic. No complaints there at all. Very "widescreen" and cinematic. Read more
This is the book that redefined superheroes for the 21st century and it is still an unsurpassed masterpiece! Read morePublished on June 19, 2010 by Hadourien68