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The world's greatest acrobat? - John C. Kirk — LiveJournal

Mar. 18th, 2010

07:43 pm - The world's greatest acrobat?

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I've been re-reading my Nightwing paperbacks recently. The Chuck Dixon series is pretty good, but the earlier book ("Ties that bind") is a bit dire. In particular, this reprints the story "Alfred's Return", where Nightwing (Dick Grayson, formerly Robin) has followed Alfred (Batman's ex-butler) to England.

Here's a dynamic page, where Nightwing swings past Big Ben:


The first time I read this comic, I don't think I paid much attention to it. Looking at it again, though, it raises a few questions. For instance, what is his rope attached to? Here's a photo of Westminster, taken from the other side of the Thames:


The clock tower is clearly the highest point around, but his cable appears to be attached to something higher. I remember a similar issue in an old Spider-Man comic, where he was shown swinging above the Empire State Building; the letters page said something like "Er, would you believe that Stan the Man was flying past in his helicopter, and gave Spidey a lift?"

The second question is where Nightwing started his swing; how did he get into the position shown in that picture? He's heading north, so presumably he's just crossed the river, but the bridge is pretty low. For that matter, even if he'd started south of the river with a really long cable, the buildings there aren't particularly high. So, it looks as though the helicopter theory may be the only explanation here, implying that he's being dragged through the air behind it.

This doesn't really matter in the great scheme of things, but it serves as a useful reminder to me in my future drawing: rather than going for a generically cool image, it's better to have something that makes sense.



[User Picture]
Date:March 18th, 2010 09:20 pm (UTC)
Could be a crane.
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[User Picture]
Date:March 19th, 2010 08:21 am (UTC)
>what is his rope attached to?

That was actually my first thought when I saw that picture. Assuming the target audience is American I don't think it matters too much. What nationality is the artist? Have they ever been to London or are they relying on source pics?
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[User Picture]
Date:March 19th, 2010 09:08 pm (UTC)
This story was written by Alan Grant (Scottish) and drawn by Dick Giordano (American). I don't know whether Giordano has ever been to London, but I'm guessing that he worked from photo reference.

Still, I've seen worse depictions of England in American media. This thread is quite entertaining, particularly the second post ("The American guide to world populations").
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