Kick-Ass: Creating the Comic, Making the Movie

Kick-Ass: Creating the Comic Making the Movie

Release Date: 
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
# of Pages: 

Ok so here’s the scenario: comic book writer Mark Millar created a series called “Kick-Ass,” based on a concept about what a superhero in real life might look like. Equal parts “The Dark Knight Returns,” “Watchmen” and “Sin City,” Kick-Ass takes the notion of a vigilante crime fighter with no specific super powers to its logical extreme. Film director Matthew Vaughn gets a hold of the graphic novel material and decides to contact Millar about making a film adaptation of Kick-Ass. The two eventually decide to do the project themselves, with their own financing, free of the film studio machine (or something like that). Now the movie is coming out soon (April 16) and this book follows the development of the comic AND the film version.

Got all that?

Awesome. Along with all of that, this book actually comes with a parental advisory warning label on the back cover. Not sure when was the last time I saw that on a book, but that should tell you something about this series and movie. If Mark Millar’s name doesn’t quite ring a bell, he’s the creator behind “Wanted,” “Superman: Red Son” “Chosen” and Marvel’s re-imagined universe series “The Ultimates.” He’s known for powerful stories, but also for some pretty perverse and over-the-top ones. If you saw the film version of “Wanted,” you should know that it was almost nothing like the graphic novel. The whole comic played like a big middle finger to both the reader and the superhero genre as a whole.

Suffice it to say, Millar isn’t scared of pushing boundaries and shocking his audience for the sake of his story. So take all that with a grain of salt. Kick-Ass features a pint size assassin who happens to be a 10 or 11 year-old girl who can swear like a sailor. It’s bloody, brutal and pretty darn engaging. What would really happen if someone decided to fight crime and ended up getting put in the hospital? Would they continue to try to fight back? Would they get evaluated by a psychiatrist to make sure they weren’t going crazy?

The book explores that to a certain extent, but mainly looks at the creation of the comic and the genesis and development of the film version at the same time. And speaking of that, this book really should come with a huge spoiler warning tag as well. I’ve never read the comic in its entirety, but unfortunately I now know all (or most of) the major plot points thanks to this thing. It’s a bit frustrating to say the least, but maybe the intention was for fans of the comic to pick this up after reading that first. Who knows?

The long and the short of it is this: if you’re a comic book/graphic novel fan with a taste for something crazy and a bit extreme, this is probably something you’d enjoy. If you’re already a Kick-Ass fan and are counting down the days to the film’s release, you’ll definitely want to pick this up for all the behind-the-scenes stuff. You will dig it for sure.

Jeremy Hunt
Review by Jeremy Hunt
Follow him @ Twitter
Friend him @ Facebook