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I ve loved the work of Will Eisner for a long time, starting with Fagin the Jew and reading, over and over, his Contract with God Trilogy Last Day in Vietnam is one of his later works, published to my understanding 5 years before his passing In it, Eisner explores not only the Vietnam War, but war in general, and as always with his work the struggles of an individual working their way through this world in whatever way they can.There is a marked otherness to the stories in Last Day in Vi I ve loved the work of Will Eisner for a long time, starting with Fagin the Jew and reading, over and over, his Contract with God Trilogy Last Day in Vietnam is one of his later works, published to my understanding 5 years before his passing In it, Eisner explores not only the Vietnam War, but war in general, and as always with his work the struggles of an individual working their way through this world in whatever way they can.There is a marked otherness to the stories in Last Day in Vietnam Eisner s characters often face front and address the reader as if they are breaking the fourth wall, soliloquizing Their poses from panel to panel are reminiscent of classic pantomime Most of the time, this direct address is, well, unaddressed, but in the first story of the collection, Last Day in Vietnam , the reader IS acknowledged as a character a journalist, an observer to the conflict And in reading the collection s Introduction, one learns that the reader and the author are one and the same.After time spent serving in World War II writing and illustrating for the newspaper, as well as creating instructional comic pamphlets on the subject of machine maintenance , Eisner continued working for the military after his service, traveling to Korea and Vietnam Last Day in Vietnam contains fictionalized accounts of his experiences during that time This creates a unique perspective, of someone having experienced war writing about a war in which he was not directly involved But as always with Eisner, the stories he tells are universal ones, and this universal nature strengthens one of the main themes of Last Day in Vietnam.Historically, we have a tendency to simplify wars down to a few key components The Civil War was brother against brother , despite the fact that many Northerners held the same prejudiced segregationist beliefs as the Confederacy We revere those who fought in World War II as being part of the greatest generation , despite the fact that the Allies and the United States in particular were also guilty of unsavory tactics and human rights violations For someone like me, who has never experienced war, it s easy to think about and discuss the politics and morality of war without understanding what it s like to be in battle Often, there is this feeling of us and them not us VS them , but us and them , as if there s a fundamental difference between those who fight and those who don t To me, this feels especially prevalent in writings regarding the Vietnam war It is my understanding that, in witnessing the carnage on their television sets, the United States turned against the Vietnam War as an American military endeavor, and shunned its veterans upon returning home How could our soldiers do such atrocious things Were they always capable of such acts, or did war change them Could war change any of us Works such as In the Lake of the Woods and Apocalypse Now show soldiers absolutely ruined by war, with no hope of assimilating back into normal society.Eisner does something different He focuses less on the aftermath,on the events of the war itself And instead of dissecting big offensives and climactic turns in battle, he turns his attention instead to the smaller details of wartime life And these are not just soldiers these are people These are not just soldiers When they look up at us from the pages, we know that we are them and they are us It should be noted, by the way, that I ve never seen M.A.S.H., though I assume it does something similar The Vietnam War in Last Day in Vietnam is both lurking in the background and front and center It informs the decisions of the characters lives, but we never get a sense of how sinister the war effort truly is Its implication informs the stories, but always as a lurking presence, something beyond our scope of comprehension, and indeed beyond the understanding of the characters speaking to us.To go into anydetail, delving into individual stories, would, I think, ruin Eisner s effectiveness He s not in the habit of crafting elaborate twists, but his monologues frequently lead to emotionally devastating conclusions beautiful devastation that is worth experiencing with fresh eyes.To me this is not Eisner s most compelling work, but make no mistake that it is compelling If you ve never read his stuff before, this is a fine introduction to a man who revolutionized a medium (((FREE BOOK))) ⇝ Last Day in Vietnam ⇲ A memoir of stories about soldiers who are engaged not only in the daily hostilities of war but also in larger,personal combat It features stories that are comical, heart rending, frightening, and yet display the incredible insight into humanity characteristic of the author s entire oeuvre A set of short stories about war from Eisner, showing us as he routinely did in his work the future of comics through true, honest stories about real people In the intro, Eisner writes about his military experience, both as a soldier in WWII and during his many years as a journalist creating a magazine to teach soldiers good maintenance habits for their gear All the stories he tells are true, delivered in mostly loose panel layouts that bring a sort of dreamlike quality to the stories that l A set of short stories about war from Eisner, showing us as he routinely did in his work the future of comics through true, honest stories about real people In the intro, Eisner writes about his military experience, both as a soldier in WWII and during his many years as a journalist creating a magazine to teach soldiers good maintenance habits for their gear All the stories he tells are true, delivered in mostly loose panel layouts that bring a sort of dreamlike quality to the stories that lends to the feeling of being an outsider in all these true stories.It s a strong collection with each story having a distinct feel and flavor If you re a fan of war narratives or want to experience some of Eisner s lesser known work, it s a good read Hey, it is Will Eisner book, how could one go wrong Visceral look at the transition many Vietnam vets had to deal with One of my friends who was in Vietnam said this GN hit me in the gut. I love you Will Eisner Not Eisner s best work, I don t see him playing with the form of comics as much as he did in any of his previous books Still, this book was an interesting take on the Vietnam War principally because it was told through an Eisner narrative structure The reader gets several small stories told from different perspectives, a trick Eisner used in almost all of his work Because of this the reader gets a lot of little impressions of the Vietnam conflict, as well as several small studies of humanity. Will Eisner s Last Day in Vietnam is a graphic novel capturing individual events from the author s tours as a war journalist through several war zones across a couple decades All are first person accounts with artwork being drawn from the author s point of view and characters in the panels addressing the author as though it were you.I m going to admit off the bat that I wasn t expecting much of this graphic novel But I picked it up at the library solely because I know of Eisner and his reputat Will Eisner s Last Day in Vietnam is a graphic novel capturing individual events from the author s tours as a war journalist through several war zones across a couple decades All are first person accounts with artwork being drawn from the author s point of view and characters in the panels addressing the author as though it were you.I m going to admit off the bat that I wasn t expecting much of this graphic novel But I picked it up at the library solely because I know of Eisner and his reputation However, just leafing through, I wasn t a huge fan of the artwork, either It struck me as a little too goofy for the subject matter And the idea of a first person account didn t seem like something that would work in this medium I can t say I ve really read any sort of comic book where you, the reader, are an actual character But, the deeper I got into this book, theI realized it actually did work I found myself really enjoying the experience and being drawn deeper into it.I felt the only drawback was that the snippets were so short I was able to tear through this book in a matter of 10 15 minutes I really wish it were a bitfleshed out It would ve benefited from ain depth analysis of the other characters whose lives you become a part of I picked this up randomly off the graphic novels shelf in the library which, shamefully, is located in the children s area because I was drawn to the title I knew absolutely nothing about it before I checked it out.This is a wonderfully drawn set of stories from both the Vietnam and the Korean wars It shows the inconsistencies and the contradictions of war, and the absolute heartbreak It also shows a bit of humor and levity that keeps the narrative from being too disheartening.The art is ab I picked this up randomly off the graphic novels shelf in the library which, shamefully, is located in the children s area because I was drawn to the title I knew absolutely nothing about it before I checked it out.This is a wonderfully drawn set of stories from both the Vietnam and the Korean wars It shows the inconsistencies and the contradictions of war, and the absolute heartbreak It also shows a bit of humor and levity that keeps the narrative from being too disheartening.The art is absolutely fantastic I love the detail that s present in each drawing, and Eisner s characters are so fluid and kinetic You can almost hear their voices, and the reader wouldn t be terribly surprised if they ended up flying off the page Even without clearly defined frames, it s easy for the reader s eye to move along the page to read the narrative in the correct order.Well drawn, well written Highly recommend It s by Will Eisner, so of course the art is superb and the storytelling sublime What exactly makes Last Day in Vietnam s art and stories so good Art Eisner s cartoony style in no way detracts from the realities of war The character expressions and movements may be exaggerated but the attention to detail in the backgrounds and costumes etc ground the stories in gritty realism If anything, it s the cartoon like style that brings the real humanity of the characters out.These are a series of v It s by Will Eisner, so of course the art is superb and the storytelling sublime What exactly makes Last Day in Vietnam s art and stories so good Art Eisner s cartoony style in no way detracts from the realities of war The character expressions and movements may be exaggerated but the attention to detail in the backgrounds and costumes etc ground the stories in gritty realism If anything, it s the cartoon like style that brings the real humanity of the characters out.These are a series of vignettes about real people and experiences most are told as if the character is talking straight to us, and one can imagine that each episode is drawn from Eisner s experiences, from real encounters with the men at the bases.These aren t war stories of men in action and combat, they are the real stories of the tense grind of real military life