If I HAD to choose two words to say about War Dogs they’d be “look deeper”.
In past reviews of my art some writers did just that and got what I’m doing. They saw past the simple use of line and the complex use of color and really got it and I want that for readers of War Dogs.
On the surface it looks like a triad, Asian gangster, shoot-em-up with a bit of drama mixed in but its really an observation on characters of Asian descent done in a way (I hope) that’s never been done before in a comic format.
Facial expressions mean something, they’re not superfluous. I wanted my characters to “act” and emote. Color plays a HUGE part in the story and suggests a lot towards the mood of a particular moment…and still, every now and then, color is used just to spice things up and be fun and add some energy.
The characters can appear 2 dimensional to the casual reader but a lot of thought went into each moment. I want to suggest their private thought process rather than spell it out in a thought balloon the way comics normally do.
I know their back stories, their past, their innermost feelings but I didn’t want to lay it all out for the reader. I wanted them ti pick up on something bubbling beneath the surface and go deeper on their own, like a dog catching the scent of its prey in a wet forest and running after it. I think that creates a stronger bond between Reader and Story. Spelling everything out is for children, not for adults and this is a story for mature readers.
Some of their actions will not be explained in the pages of book one. You’ll have to figure them out. It won’t happen often but it will happen.
I did not write this for kids at all and would not suggest you let your children read it until they’re older.
I take pride in the fact this comic may be a young Asian comic readers first time seeing his / her “face” presented in comic form.
I know how I felt as a young Latino kid growing up in the ghetto, how it felt to see a Spanish name in the credits of a comic book, that being George Perez.
It was a revelation. “Oh…I can do this too!”
That changed the world for me at about age 12 and I want that to happen for someone else.
All this “go deeper” business aside, ultimately this has to be a fun, engaging, exciting story or all the sub-text will be for nothing. It has to look cool first or you won’t let me tell my tale, I get that. I’ve made every effort to dot all my “I’s” and cross all my “t’s” and still, I’m sure there will be some small things I missed. Such is the risk you run when doing it all on your own. Six people work together, over a period of months, to get a comic story out in completion and I ‘m just one flawed man.
Not an excuse, just a fact.
So if you really want to enjoy War Dogs… go Deeper than you normally would with a Spider-Man story or a Superman comic because there is definitely something there. If you catch “the scent” rest assured you’ll find something beneath the surface.