The Sgt. Rock Archives, Vol. 3 (DC Archive Editions)

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9781401204105: The Sgt. Rock Archives, Vol. 3 (DC Archive Editions)
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An intense portrait of combat and conflict, this volume reprints the classic World War II adventures of Sgt. Rock and his colorful band of fighting soldiers. Originally published in the early 1960s, these memorable tales showcase the heroic and extraordinary missions of the tough, grizzled leader and the combat-happy Joes of Easy Company. Introduction by Mark Chiarello.

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The third DC Archives volume of Sgt. Rock captures the tough-as-nails soldier in World War II tales from Our Army at War #111-125. The stories generally fall into two categories: First, meeting the combat-happy joes of Easy Co., all branded with a nickname, or "battle tag"--Ice Cream Soldier, Wild Man, Sunny, Bulldozer, etc.--or second, breaking in green, disinterested, or otherwise ill-fitting soldiers into the squad. Common messages include: opposing tanks always go for the bazooka first; peppering a tank with bullets through the view slots will eventually set off the ammo; and nothing's easy in Easy Co. But we also meet Rock's "battle family" and see him when he leads a Nazi force against Easy. The stories are all by Rock creator Bob Kanigher, and the majority of the art is by Joe Kubert, with contributions from Russ Heath and Irv Novick. --David Horiuchi

From Booklist:

War comics were an industry staple in the 1950s and 1960s, and the prototypical four-color soldier was hard-as-nails Sgt. Rock, who led the "combat-happy Joes" of Easy Company through hundreds of World War II missions from 1959 to 1988. Although penned by Kanigher, who voiced Rock in a distinctive first-person narration that often made the topkick sound more like a hard-boiled detective than a battle--hardened grunt, the character is most associated with Kubert. The artist's style, darker and more expressive than those of most of the era's comic artists, was inappropriate for the superheroes that dominated the field but essentially set the tone for war comics. The 15 stories from 1961-62 in this deluxe volume are typical. However formulaic and lacking in nuance, they are effective examples of telling a story in a handful of pages as opposed to the drawn-out approach predominant in today's comics. These romanticized tales of heroism and camaraderie demonstrate why Sgt. Rock had such a strong influence on the generation of boys that soon faced service in Vietnam. Gordon Flagg
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