Sunday, January 24, 2010

War Story: Condors

Written by Garth Ennis
Art by Carlos Ezquerra

I know very little about the Spanish Civil War, short of some George Orwell that I read in high school. Ennis's story here provides a very rich portrait of that war, and the various level of involvement and motivation of many foreigners who felt that they needed to be involved.

Four men end up in the same foxhole during a long night of shelling. They tell each other their stories, and in the morning go their separate ways. It's a simple story, but heavily nuanced in its portrayal of social classes and the nationalist, socialist, and fascistic sentiments of the time.

One man is a German fighter pilot who got involved because he loves to fly, and is already turning a blind eye to the militaristic extremes of the Nazi party back home. Another is a socialist Englishman of embarrassingly earnest ideals. The third is an Irishman with more balls than brains. The final member of the group is the only Spaniard, a survivor of Guernica.

Ezquerra's art is tighter and grittier than usual, and perfectly suited to this story. This is a powerful work, and one I enjoyed a great deal.

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