Friday, July 11, 2008

Friday Night Fights: Self-destroyer, wreck your health/Destroy friends, destroy yourself

This is the final week of Friday Night Fights—Classic Edition!!! presented, as always, by the Inimitable Bahlactus. The past eleven rounds of FNF have been all in black-and-white, and in the spirit of stepping into the monochrome ring with the fightin'est, black-and-whiten'est, righten'est comic there is, I've pulled out the 1986 Scott McCloud classic aptly titled


Now I know how those monkeys in '2001' felt!


(it says on the front)

This comic book is exactly what you think it is: 32 pages of meaningless, overblown violence, mayhem and destruction! (Plus one Naughty Word)

And, up below the bombastically immense title on the cover:


It only cost $4.95 in 1986, but this comic book is huge. How huge is it? It's fourteen inches tall and eleven inches wide...twenty-two inches across when you open it up. It is so huge I can sit entirely inside it.

So big I can sit in it!

It is so large I couldn't fit it into my scanner. So yes, you are looking at photographs of the comic book here, not scans. Don't sue me, Mister Understanding Comics McCloud!

The plot? Well, such as it is: The Red Basher has gone berserk in Manhattan, destroying everything in sight, and only Captain Maximum can stop him. So, you're likely to get several pages of angsty discussion and conversation over what's eating the Red Basher, huh? Not in a comic book called DESTROY!!, baby!:


The mega-sized pages and McCloud's crisp distinct inkwork are perfect for displaying the most intense and violent fistfight in the history of comics. Well, at least the most destructive:

He's still going!

Remember that Justice League issue where Batman laid out Guy Gardner with the famous "one punch"? That's child's play. With one punch, the Basher sends Captain Maximum flying from the Wall Street district on Manhattan's south end straight uptown to Rockefeller Center: as a character screams, "a total of more than four miles!" And, right into the Time-Warner Building, too!


Say goodbye ("Bye bye!") to most of New York's most famous architectural wonders, as the Flatiron Building, the Empire State Building, Grand Central Terminal, and Chrysler Building get smashed into rubble during the mighty brawl!

There goes the Chrysler Building!

Because once big superpowered guys start hitting each other with buildings, it's sorta like potato's hard to stop!

Give me your tired, your poor...DESTROY!!

From there on the fussin', the feudin', and the fightin' (not to mention the SHOUTIN') start to get a little outta control:

A whole lotta fightin' goin' on

My goodness. It's getting mighty violent in here.

Two pages of DESTROY!!

All good things must of course come to an end:


(Granted, that's a pretty macabre panel, but hey, it was published in 1986, when we still could think blowing up New York was fun to look at.)

Anyway, the punchline, in the final two panels?

Well, at least no one was hurt.

So there you have it, ladies and gentlemen. The ultimate black-and-white Friday Night Fightin' comic book. Graphic novel literature at its finest, and a masterwork of visual narrative fiction that simply must be experienced in the original big-ass format to be appreciated. That, my dear friends, is the magic of...DESTROY!!

(Buy your own:

...and read about DESTROY!! on Scott McCloud's website.)

Bahlactus is big, yeah yeah yeah. He's not small, no no no.


Phil Looney said...

This is a great book. I hope this gets reprinted at some point. Maybe it will now that Zot is getting a nice collection.

Phillip said...

So what was the naughty word?

Beta Ray Steve said...

Almost as violent as 'Milk and Cheese'.

Luke said...

THis was in the used book store around the corner a few years back. I almost bought it, but had no cash on me. I went back and it was gone. BAH.

Anonymous said...

I found the smaller, 3-D version of this on sale on Amazon. Still debating whether or not to drop $30 on the full sized one or not.

And if memory serves, the one naughty word was "asshole"

SJ said...

Well, it's fun to see some of Scott McCloud's work not explaining comics, but what I really want to know: is Bully wearing a golfing outfit?