Blazing Combat

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Nominated for a 2010 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award: the legendary anti-war comic.
Written by Archie Goodwin and drawn by such luminaries as Frank Frazetta, Wally Wood, John Severin, Alex Toth, Al Williamson, Russ Heath, Reed Crandall, and Gene Colan, Blazing Combat was originally published by independent comics publisher James Warren in 1965 and ’66. Following in the tradition of Harvey Kurtzman’s Two-Fisted Tales and Frontline Combat, Goodwin’s stories reflected the human ...
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Overview

Nominated for a 2010 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award: the legendary anti-war comic.
Written by Archie Goodwin and drawn by such luminaries as Frank Frazetta, Wally Wood, John Severin, Alex Toth, Al Williamson, Russ Heath, Reed Crandall, and Gene Colan, Blazing Combat was originally published by independent comics publisher James Warren in 1965 and ’66. Following in the tradition of Harvey Kurtzman’s Two-Fisted Tales and Frontline Combat, Goodwin’s stories reflected the human realities and personal costs of war rather than exploiting the clichés of the traditional men’s adventure genre. They were among the best comics stories about war ever published.Blazing Combat ended after its fourth issue when military post exchanges refused to sell the title due to their perception that it was an anti-war comic. Their hostility was fueled by the depiction of the then-current Vietnam War, especially a story entitled “Landscape,” which follows the thoughts of a simple Vietnamese peasant rice-farmer who pays the ultimate price simply for living where he does—and which was considered anti-war agit-prop by the more hawkish members of the business community.
Writer Archie Goodwin and the original publisher James Warren discuss the death of Blazing Combat and market censorship as well as the creative gestation of the series in exclusive interviews.
Nominated for a 2010 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award: (Best Archival Collection/Project: Comic Books).
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Editorial Reviews

Tim Janson - Mania
“This book is why Fantagraphics is one of the best and most important comic publishers in the business today. ... This is a brilliant collection of stories that should be required reading. Intelligent, gripping stories and fantastic art! Grade: A +.”
Johnny Bacardi - Popdose
“For lovers of great art, lovingly rendered in black and white and gray ink wash..., this is as good as it gets... This is one collection of war comics that even those not inclined to care about the genre can appreciate, and now it’s more affordable than ever.”
Chris Mautner - Robot 6
“[T]he artistry on display is… mind-boggling, particularly in the case of Crandall, Heath and Severin… The creators clearly had a real love for this kind of material, so much so that I wish things had tipped slightly in their favor a bit more.”
Josh West - Comicsphere
“...Jacques Tardi returns to the world of guns, crime, betrayal and bloodshed with this stunning, grisly, and remarkably faithful interpretation of Manchette’s last completed crime thriller.”
Douglas Wolk - TIME/Techland
“I think it's healthy for adolescent boys to have access to well-written, well-drawn comics about war, as long as the comics in question constantly pound home the message that war is futile, stupid and contemptible.”
Tom McLean - Bags and Boards
“[A]n amazing collection of… stories… written by the outstanding Archie Goodwin… throw in some of the most amazing art, all of it sharply and expertly reproduced, and you’ve got some real dynamite here. ... And there’s fantastic bonus features.”
Robert Martin - The Comics Journal
“[A]mong the high points of 1960s comics, and this handsome collection is one of the most welcome reprint volumes of the last few years.”
Tom Spurgeon - The Comics Reporter
“Like many of the best reprint projects... this republication of the four-issue Warren war magazine features work that you can’t easily buy anywhere else, is historically significant and offers its buyers a lot of very good comics... Blazing Combat is simply a handsome, well-presented selection of very good comics that for having them around we’re all a bit richer as comics readers. I’m glad it’s here.”
Steven Grant - Comic Book Resources
“[One of] the… best collections of 2009…, bringing all the issues of Warren magazine's short-lived war comic under one cover, written (mostly) by Archie Goodwin and drawn by some of the finest artists of the '60s…”
Chris Marshall - Collected Comics Library
“…[T]here was a time when a [war] comic mag got down right truthful.... Blazing Combat was an anthology comic that showed the very dark and very real side of war…. It’s a who’s-who of monster talent...”
Chris Marshall - Forbidden Planet International
“There was a time when War Comics told War Fact. They showed us the blood, death, camaraderie and horror. [Blazing Combat] did just that and didn’t hold back.”
Mania
This book is why Fantagraphics is one of the best and most important comic publishers in the business today. ... This is a brilliant collection of stories that should be required reading. Intelligent, gripping stories and fantastic art! Grade: A +.— Tim Janson
Popdose
For lovers of great art, lovingly rendered in black and white and gray ink wash..., this is as good as it gets... This is one collection of war comics that even those not inclined to care about the genre can appreciate, and now it’s more affordable than ever.— Johnny Bacardi
Robot 6
[T]he artistry on display is… mind-boggling, particularly in the case of Crandall, Heath and Severin… The creators clearly had a real love for this kind of material, so much so that I wish things had tipped slightly in their favor a bit more.— Chris Mautner
Comicsphere
...Jacques Tardi returns to the world of guns, crime, betrayal and bloodshed with this stunning, grisly, and remarkably faithful interpretation of Manchette’s last completed crime thriller.— Josh West
TIME/Techland
I think it's healthy for adolescent boys to have access to well-written, well-drawn comics about war, as long as the comics in question constantly pound home the message that war is futile, stupid and contemptible.— Douglas Wolk
Bags and Boards
[A]n amazing collection of… stories… written by the outstanding Archie Goodwin… throw in some of the most amazing art, all of it sharply and expertly reproduced, and you’ve got some real dynamite here. ... And there’s fantastic bonus features.— Tom McLean
The Comics Journal
[A]mong the high points of 1960s comics, and this handsome collection is one of the most welcome reprint volumes of the last few years.— Robert Martin
The Comics Reporter
Like many of the best reprint projects... this republication of the four-issue Warren war magazine features work that you can’t easily buy anywhere else, is historically significant and offers its buyers a lot of very good comics... Blazing Combat is simply a handsome, well-presented selection of very good comics that for having them around we’re all a bit richer as comics readers. I’m glad it’s here.— Tom Spurgeon
Comic Book Resources
[One of] the… best collections of 2009…, bringing all the issues of Warren magazine's short-lived war comic under one cover, written (mostly) by Archie Goodwin and drawn by some of the finest artists of the '60s…— Steven Grant
Collected Comics Library
…[T]here was a time when a [war] comic mag got down right truthful.... Blazing Combat was an anthology comic that showed the very dark and very real side of war…. It’s a who’s-who of monster talent...— Chris Marshall
Forbidden Planet International
There was a time when War Comics told War Fact. They showed us the blood, death, camaraderie and horror. [Blazing Combat] did just that and didn’t hold back.— Chris Marshall
Timothy Hodler - Robot 6
“With people like Wood, Toth, and Heath involved, I knew the art would be fantastic in Blazing Combat, but I’ve been surprised at the quality of Archie Goodwin’s writing...it’s much more satisfying than expected.”
David McDonnell - Starlog
“[O]nce again, I’m engaged in Blazing Combat. What a thrill! And the art!... Highly recommended. Don’t argue! Just buy it!”
Rob Lott - Bookgasm
“Although the subject matter is bleak, the presentation it’s been given is beautiful. This is as good as war comics get.”
Gordon Flagg - Booklist
“Blazing Combat’s...issues constitute a high-water mark of the war-comics genre.”
Jimmy Palmiotti - Newsarama
“[F]eatures a collection of some of the most beautiful black and white comic art you have ever seen... It also features interviews and some of the most beautiful printing I have seen. Honestly, put down those monthly comics for a week and buy something you will enjoy a lifetime. From cover to cover, this book is what keeps me in comics.”
Michael C. Lorah - Newsarama
“Anybody who wants to read great great comics, war stories, or a superb tutorial in short form comics writing and unsurpassed comics illustration needs to read this one.”
Jonah Spangenthal-Lee - The Stranger
“Packed with gloriously miserable... war stories covering everything from the battle of Thermopylae to Vietnam... all beautifully captured by comics legends like Archie Goodwin, Alex Toth, Joe Orlando, and Gene Colan in appropriately murky grays... Fantagraphics has slapped together a nice, hefty... hardbound collection that's worth a read, whether you're a comic nerd, war buff, one-legged veteran, or one of those snooty I-only-read-graphic-novels types.”
Litany of Schist
“Blazing Combat, a new hardcover collection from Fantagraphics, showcases some truly fantastic work from a multitude of comics greats... The collection itself is sharp as a tack... Fantagraphics really packages it nicely.”
Kevin Church - BeaucoupKevin.com
“Adam Grano’s bold design cover design is the perfect complement to Fantagraphics’ comprehensive collection... with a stellar team of artists that included Frank Frazetta, Wally Wood, John Severin, Alex Toth, Al Williamson, Russ Heath, Reed Crandall, and Gene Colan. It’s remarkable how little these stories have aged, as many cover thematic ground that resonates to this day.... Even the more straightforward “war comics” that are presented in this volume have an unusual gravitas that fits naturally over the proceedings, making the stories collected stand out, and the interviews with Archie Goodwin and Jim Warren provide an in-depth and fascinating look at the pressures that the controversial comic magazine faced.”
Sandy Bilus - I Love Rob Liefeld
“This collection of the 1965-66 Blazing Combat war comic magazine is a stellar publication... It's a master class on how to tell a short story, and I highly recommend checking it out.”
Gary Sassaman - Innocent Bystander
“Blazing Combat reprints all 4 issues of the ground-breaking war series... These are fascinating stories... drawn by some of the top talent in comics... [who] did some of their finest works for this short-lived publication. This new package from Fantagraphics Books is a handsome hardcover... the design work is A+, this time by Adam Grano.”
Marc Mason - Comics Waiting Room
“Poignant and tragic, inspiring and depressing, Blazing Combat give an insightful glimpse into the bloody battles that have plagued this world.”
Rachelle Goguen - The Coast (Halifax)
“Each panel is a stunning work of art, beautifully preserved on heavy paper. Just as relevant as when they were first published, the stories should still draw an emotional reaction.”
Carol Borden - The Cultural Gutter
“Blazing Combat collects the entire run in a beautiful, incredibly well-bound hardcover book... The stories' tone is very 1960s, ironic with a cynicism stemming from brokenhearted humanism.”
Johanna Draper Carlson - Comics Worth Reading
“Astounding...The art is reproduced from 'the original printer’s films,'
so the work is clear and detailed, with the washes and shading providing depth and a feeling of realism...The stories are still timely.”
The Comic Book Haters
“These are awesome comics, collected in one hardcover edition... Fantagraphics have done us a big favor by reprinting them all.”
This Is Why I Hate You
“Just finished reading and cannot recommend enough the new Fantagraphics release Blazing Combat.”
Richard Arndt
“Probably the best war comic ever published.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9788467904253
  • Publisher: Norma Editorial Sa
  • Publication date: 3/25/2011

Meet the Author

Archie Goodwin was an important comic book writer and editor for Warren, DC, and Marvel. He was born in 1937 and died in 1998.
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