I’ve seen a few oddly illustrated books come across my desk this year, but with that said, they have also been some of the most entertaining. A recent book by the name of “The Great Showdowns” arrived under the authorship of Scott Campbell. Heck it even has an opener foreword by Neil Patrick Harris.
Hardbound, small (7×7 size) with 144 pages of illustrations. In fact beyond the introduction and forward, the book is completely word free. “The Great Showdown” is a gift from Campbell to our culture as “our culture” is exactly the fundamental building blocks of this release. Each page contains an iconic showdown that is primarily rooted in cinema culture. It’s actually quite a hoot, and “hoot” is a perfect way to describe this release.
Instantly upon opening, my first inclination was to gather the family around to take guesses at which film or situation the showdowns were alluding to. While some are obvious such as the “Matrix or “Alien” films (Ok, for clarity, the illustration was for “Aliens”), others might make some thought and the ability to dig within one’s self to recognize the illustrative signs.
This book is not meant for casual reading, it’s purpose almost entirely screams, “set me on your table and let others feel the need to participate in the humor”. My second thought here, was “great X-mas gift…indeed!”.
“The Great Showdown” is not a book that I would solely classify under a stunning display of art. It’s illustration are limited to cartoony watercolor illustrations that use obvious and subtle traits to pick your brains on identifying the conflicts. And if you are looking for resolution here, you won’t find it as each page lacks narration (or even an index) as to what showdown” is being displayed.
While there were a few that I confess needing some clarity, this book is about your connection to our culture and your ability in recognizing cinematic associations.
Recommended? Heck ya! this book is alot of fun and a great party gift to boot! Another fine product from the “Titan Books” publishing team!
Book Review: The Great Showdowns – Author Scott Campbell