A story about this — 3 years ago
I’m still not quite sure what to make of Black Dossier. I’m happy to see more LoEG, and pleased that where the comic is interrupted with diaries, books, and travel guides, these are not the same somewhat-dull walls of text that rounded out volume two. The majority of them are fascinating and entertaining, and bring much more life to the League’s history than vol. 2 did. My favorite was the recounting of how Mina got Nemo to agree to joining the League.
However, I’m missing the old league members (Nemo and Hyde seemed so much more interesting than Allan and sometimes even Mina). It also feels like we’ve missed out on so many amazing adventures, which we get to hear about secondhand through the diaries, comics, and book-segments. Moreover, I was not in love with the plot. Allan and Mina basically steal the Black Dossier, a series of documents that outline the history of the League and the generations who have served in it (before and after Mina’s League). What follows is a long chase story that involves James Bond, Bulldog Drummond, and the remnants of an Orwellian government. For a series that can be so smart, this plot seemed rather blah – I felt like this was mostly an excuse to give us League history and less about Mina and Allan’s latest adventure.
If you’ve read all of vol. 1 and 2, there are lots of references and visuals that you will get, and be pleased that you get them… just expect to spend a lot of time poring over the book. While this volume has skads of references to other literature and films, it’s become just as much a self-referential piece. The artwork is, as always, amazing. And that brings me to another thing… expect lots of sex and nudity. But shouldn’t you expect that from any work that includes a Tijuana Bible? Particularly an Orwell-inspired one? The 3-D section worked surprisingly well.