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Sub-Mariner: The Depths Hardcover – June 24, 2009

4.1 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 120 pages
  • Publisher: Marvel; First Edition edition (June 24, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0785133291
  • ISBN-13: 978-0785133292
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 1 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,505,452 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Sub-Mariner: The Depths is a peculiar book. It has two of my favorite creators at its helm, both charting completely unexplored territory. They, as creators, surpass the realms of their past efforts by delving as deep as they can into the subconscious of claustrophobic terror. Peter Milligan, in my mind, can craft better worlds and atmospheres than almost any other comic writer out there. Esad Ribic, with his paint-style art, excels at illustrating a world ready to jump out of the page due to its realism. Yet at the same time, his work is so dream-like that you feel as if you are personally connected to the comic.

The Depths takes place in the time before Marvels and The Marvels Project, when costume-clad heroes didn't even exist. However, Namor and his city of Atlantis might (perhaps only in the rumors of the 1940s era sailors). Doctor Stein is recruited to find Captain Marlowe (a fitting Heart of Darkness reference), who went missing in search of Atlantis. Doctor Stein, he being a professional de-bunker of superstition, takes this as a personal mission because he will stop at nothing to disprove the existence of Namor and Atlantis. And so the story goes.

This story is bleak. I was waiting for a pleasant ending, but I never got one. From the beginning, the evil never lets loose its grip. I give it 4 stars selfishly because I was so disappointed with the end resolution. Could the darkness of man really reach that far deep?

writing: [8/10]
art: [10/10]
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Format: Paperback
Based on some of the other reviews, it is obvious that mainstream comics are up against some fairly big limitations with their readers, almost as if publishers (still) have to worry about expectations based solely on cover art.

For open-minded readers, this nuanced descent (literally and figuratively) into a hallucinatory ocean to discover (and therefore fail to discover) Atlantis, is a luscious, high quality comic book by writer Peter Milligan and artist Esad Rubic.

The story is certainly subtle enough to invite several possible interpretations of the main characters, a scientist/myth debunker named Stein, and Sub-Mariner (who is always present by his absence). I have always liked Everett's first Sub-Mariner, because he is less a "super-hero" than a kind of hybrid species (with even hints of racial difference) whose sole concern was with protecting his people and the ocean.

This is not a conventional Sub-Mariner battling superheroes comic book. Milligan and Rubic's Sub-Mariner is terrifying, and his only interest seems to be in preventing evidence of his home, the mythic city of Atlantis, from reaching the surface. Set during the Cold War, the period provides more of a cultural than political setting. It is rare to read such a tightly plotted, ironic and beautiful comic book.
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Format: Hardcover
"Sub-Mariner: The Depths"
Written by Peter Milligan
Illustrated by Esad Ribic
(Marvel Comics, 2010)
---------------------------------------
This is a rather unusual Marvel book, in which the Sub-Mariner himself takes back seat to a claustrophobic submarine story about an old-school explorer-scientist who travels to the Marianas Trench in order to debunk the "myth" of Atlantis. Along the way, the crew of his submarine spook him with stories of depth-induced psychoses and the murderous undersea boogieman called Namor. We hardly see Subby at all in this book -- only in glimpses and up close for a panel or two. Mostly the story is a psychological narrative, with thematic and stylistic debts to "Moby Dick," 1930s pulps, old submarine films, and James Cameron's "The Abyss."

I don't completely mind the relative lack of Sub-Mariner-ness (even with the misleading cover art) but I find other aspects of the story to be a bit weird. We are introduced to the explorer protagonist as he is giving a scientific lecture in a blimp-filled New York City, apparently pre-World War Two, but when the expedition gets underway, the submarine itself is remarkably advanced for the late 1930s (...or '40s? or '50s?) and when they get to the Trench, there is a ginormous undersea research station, with airlocks and a generous oxygen supply... These scientific anachronisms, and the weird, nude, fang-toothed, homicidal version of Namor himself leads me to believe this is some sort of alternate-reality, non-canonical steampunk-ish take on the Sub-Mariner story... Which is fine, except I wish the publisher had made it more plain to readers who might be coming at this expecting a more conventional retelling of the Sub-Mariner origin story. Worth checking out, but possibly not what you had in mind... (DJ Joe Sixpack, ReadThatAgain book reviews)
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was never what you would call a fan of the character Namor: the Sub-Mariner. I was familiar enough with him to know he was no Aquaman rip-off but that was really about it. However, after reading some online reviews about this book and how it is a horror-based spin on Namor I decided to give it a try. I was not disappointed. I have read it over and over again and it still gives me chills. If you are a comic reader and also liked John Carpenter's The Thing, buy this book.
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