silkcuts's Big Numbers #2 - Big Numbers: Part 2 review

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Dealing with Big Numbers can make you go nuts Part . 2

I can't believe it took me this long to get to reading Big Numbers.  My experience to Big Numbers is ironically symbolic because there was synchronicity in the situation and it played out almost like a living example of Chaos Theory.  What I mean by this is that there was a butterfly effect.  Less then a year ago I joined comicvine, made some friends and some acquaintances.  I am not sure if Roxanne Star would define us as either, but she is a cool cat none the less.  A week or two ago. I would tell her I am jealous of a sketch she has from Mr. Alan Moore himself.  Not sure how she met him, but she did know him, lettered his work once or something like that.  We chatted about a lot of things and I was ashamed I never read Big Numbers.  I would actually find issues #1 and 2 at The Beguiling in Toronto and then I decided to pick them up after that.  What does that all mean?  It means there was a butterfly effect. Big Numbers came up, I had an opportunity to buy it, I bought it. It is symbolic because Big Numbers deals in the Chaos theory, it is the butterfly effect of a huge American Mall in a small British town that calls that type of building a "Shopping Centre".
What is special about Big Numbers is that the concept is like nothing tried in comics before it.  Moore blended into his scripts the Chaos Theory, while Bill Sienkiewicz laid out a wonder form of fractional geometry.  This team would find a synergy to a series I wish was completed.  Big Numbers is a brave and bold piece of comic work. For example, the panels in Big Numbers can be read in a few ways.  Not always the traditional left to right, there are at times many narratives being told at the same time and on the same page.  By issue Number two, the layout makes so much more sense then issue #1.  Below is a flow chart:

 In this page there is 12 panels.  Mathematically the number 12 is already important, because this series was suppose to be 12 issues long.  12 is also a dozen, a solid number and a strong number.  (1) The Peach colored lines show the discussion between the man and woman. (2) The Purple colored lines show the interaction between adults and children. (3) The Red colored lines show the standard left to right way to read a comic.  There are at times many ways to read a page in Big Numbers.  In the example above all of that interaction is happening at once, and the page layout is a way were we can read the page in whatever fashion we want.
Besides the panel work, the story Moore writes is great.  In this issue he treats the "American Shopping Centre" as an alien threat.  Note that even the spelling of "Centre" is different from the American spelling of "Center", the word choice is different as well... because in North America we tend to choose the word "Mall" over Shopping Center.  Moore picks his words perfectly, because this introduction of the "Shopping Centre" is that alien threat to the local business in this small British Town.
Only until I was reading this issue and really thinking, I noticed Sienkiewicz's art switches.  At times it is photo real, at times it looks like water colored inks and at times cartoonish, there may be even more.  Part of the reason I think the art takes this approach is to show changes in perception and reality. Another thing I noticed was that even in photo real pictures there are at times scratched squiggly lines. I am under the impression that this is the symbolic way to show we are all part of string theory.  
The Mandelbrot set
One thing I must point out was that this comic was completely black and white,  except for a poster in a boys room.  On page #27 we see on that poster "The Mandelbrot Set".  The Mandelbrot Set  was named after the man who made fractals popular, Mr. Benoît Mandelbrot.  By having The Mandelbrot Set being the only thing in color in this comic, I suggest Moore is telling us that Fractals are the only truths in this story, since it is the only thing given vibrant life of color.  If everything is colorless, then everything is not the focus.  We are to believe everything eve see is only a faction of the truth.  
It is a shame Big Numbers remains incomplete, I now join the many who believe that it would of been another crown jewel in Moore's already crowded crown.  With only two published issues, Big Numbers remains a great study guide to why Alan Moore is the greatest Graphic Novel writer that ever lived.  He is brave and bold and daring.  If you can get your hands on either Big Numbers 1 or 2, I would most definitely recommend reading it. 
- Silkcuts
14 Comments Refresh
Posted by Dark Noldor

Great Review
Too bad they released only 2 numbers 
Funny thing is that I read an interview of Bill last week explaining
why they abandoned the project

Posted by Silkcuts
@Dark Noldor:  It is sad really.  Bill gives his protege a break, the protege breaks the series.  There was so much potential in this series.  From Hell and Lost Girls were finished, too mad Bill never too this series back to complete it.
So from the interview, what did Bill say was the reason for abandoning the project?
Posted by Roxanne Starr
Hi, Kevin! 
Your mentioning me in the review was fine. I was afraid when you told me you were talking about me here, that you would be revealing my list of Favorite Sex Toys that I sent you in private. LOL!!!
Posted by Silkcuts
@Roxanne Starr said:
" @Silkcuts:  Hi, Kevin!  Your mentioning me in the review was fine. I was afraid when you told me you were talking about me here, that you would be revealing my list of Favorite Sex Toys that I sent you in private. LOL!!! "
That list is our secret.   ;)
Not often do I see what tickles the fancy of people who are in the art biz.
I hope the review got your approval.
Posted by Roxanne Starr
Your parcel is in the mail. :-)
Posted by turoksonofstone

 Bill Sienkiewicz art has always been something to behold.  Silkcuts, the depth of thought on display in this review makes me shudder in Awe. Alan Moore is to writing what Kiirby is to Art. Always seeking to add new layers of depth and make you question your perception of their work, though with Moore I feel it's more of a conscious choice. I think it rings true. 
@Roxanne Starr:
!! Secrets !!

Posted by Silkcuts
@Roxanne Starr said:
" @Silkcuts:   Your parcel is in the mail. :-) "
YES! A hard copy of your  toy list.  Thank God for media rate.
Posted by Silkcuts
@turoksonofstone:  Thanks buddy.  Yeah, I still can't believe I have to defend Moore in this day and age.  I got complaints that I say Moore is underrated because most people value those that came after him, but ignore Moore's influence.  The Moore I read of Moore the more he amazes me.  I am one of the lucky ones to get a copy of Big Numbers 1 and 2, there is no way those I was arguing with have read it.  If they did, no way they understood it.  Moore is the greatest comic writer ever.  Hands down.
Posted by turoksonofstone
Moore's body of work speaks for itself. Have you read the Supreme stuff yet? Or " From Hell"?
Posted by Silkcuts
@turoksonofstone:  Both works of art, From Hell I reviewed early off when I joined the Vine, Supreme I need to reread so I can review it better and proper.  My main goal for 2011 is to have all the Moore stuff I have reviewed in some form, if its just the trades then be it, maybe even the single issues. 
My all time fave is Promethea and I plan to have those all reviewed by the end of April, I have the 2 absolutes, gotta get myself the 3rd one for my B-day.
Posted by Roxanne Starr
Your birthday is in April? Mine too!!!  
The Shakespeare! (Shirley Temple, Valerie Bertinelli, Sanda Dee, Jackie Cooper, Duncan Renaldo, Roy Orbison, Herve Villechaize, Jamie King, Lee Majors, Michael Moore <gulp> Warren Spawn and about a hundred million others.)
P.S. Don't pay any attention to Turok's ire over our little secret. He's just jealous. :-)
Posted by Silkcuts
@Roxanne Starr:  Mine is the 14th... don't know who shares it :(
Yours is a good date.
yeah, Turok can stay
Posted by Roxanne Starr
@Silkcuts said:
" @Roxanne Starr:  Mine is the 14th... don't know who shares it :( Yours is a good date. yeah, Turok can stay "

Turok has read too many comic books. He's lost touch with reality. LOL!!!
Posted by Silkcuts
@Roxanne Starr:  That makes so much

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