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Red

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3.44 of 5 stars 3.44  ·  rating details  ·  1,481 ratings  ·  105 reviews
In the explosive espionage-thriller RED, Warren Ellis and artist Cully Hamner create a stark tale of revenge, as retired CIA killer Paul Moses finds himself forced back into the game to gain revenge on the agency that trained him.
Paperback, 128 pages
Published June 16th 2009 by WildStorm (first published October 1st 2005)
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(showing 1-30 of 2,144)
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Bry
Not what I was expecting I'll admit, but come on?! Where was Helen in the ball gown with the machine gun??

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I guess I was just expecting the movie that I saw to be a bit more in line with this since this is the original story....I know, I know what the hell was I thinking. Since when are movies all that faithful to their books?

The story focuses only on Paul Moses - no geriatric sidekicks for him this time round - as he is sucked from his retirement when the CIA suddenly wants their golden boy of
...more
Lolly's Library
Short, violent and to the point. Not much character development and what story there is serves only to move the action alone, nothing more. For those looking to expand on their movie experience, move along, there's nothing to see here. In fact, it was the movie which expanded on the book, which only focuses on the tale of Paul Moses and his reactivation to the world of assassination. Other than that, the layout is crisp and focused, and the animation is vivid and well-done. I would say not much ...more
Sam Quixote
A retired CIA operative called Paul Moses is suddenly being targeted by a new CIA director for the things he did in his past. He suddenly finds himself fending off assassins as he goes from retired (Green) to active (Red).

The fantastic Warren Ellis does a tremendous job of writing an enthralling revenge tale. Moses shows that despite being old that he is far from useless as he kills his way to the top to take down the CIA Director who ordered his retirement be called off.

It's a very short read
...more
faeriemyst
Judging by thickness of the book, I thought there might be more story than there ended up being (74 pages, the rest sketches and the script). While the plot was decent, it seemed more like a prelude than a finished story. Though it had a beginning and middle, there was no end, just another beginning. I would have liked more. The artwork serves the story well and I had no trouble following the layout, though it is the color schemes that stood out to me. They were fantastic. From the subdued blues ...more
Steyn
Quite enjoyed the movie, and as a result tried the graphic novel (maybe that was my mistake - the movie caused some preconceptions in my head). Was to say the least quite dissapointed. Firstly, it appeared to be a slightly thinner than normal graphic novel, but not too bad. Until i found that the actual graphic novel was less than half the content of the book! Storyboard sketches etc made up most of the book! What ended up in the movie, was pretty much "inspired" by the book, but if a direct com ...more
Gavin
Nice to see when a short little story gets done by a writer who isn't going to compromise or flinch. Too many would take this story and do what Hollywood did to it (in fact, so different to the book, there's no humour in Paul Moses at all, there's no sidekicks, just one pissed off man.)
The art is brutal, in a good way, just strong colours, red obviously being the base, and a lot of bullet motion, heads snapping back, and angry man face.
Also nice that Ellis didn't take an idea and try to stretch
...more
Mitchel Broussard
Fleshed out, it could achieve greatness. However, what we get is a 70 page splatter fest of a wholly unlikeable old guy killing mostly-innocent people for the mere fact that they kinda made him angry. Thank god it seems the movie is adding a cast of diverse characters, and Bruce Willis seems to be bringing comedy into it. Because this was way too serious and way too short to be anything enjoyable. If a 90 minute movie can pull off a solid action movie out of this material, I think congratulation ...more
Tina
I re-read this one this morning. It's been a few years since my first reading (I'd gotten it out of the library once I heard a favourite actor of mine had been cast in the original movie that spun from this book) and I wanted to revisit it. First, those people who picked this up after the movie and expected to see the same story in graphic novel form . . . please stop holding that against this original work. It isn't the book's fault that you didn't realize what it was when you picked it up. The ...more
Stephen
A dick sandwich. Avoid. You get about $3.00 worth of ideas and stories in this piece 'o shit GN, but you have to pay $15 for it. Avoid. Avoid. Avoid. I strongly advise all potential purchasers to spend their hard-earned money on something else. This is not a worthwhile read, and the art is far below expectations.
Paul Mirek
Kudos to Ellis and Hamner for coming up with a short, snappy idea with something to say, but refusing to pad it out and inevitably weaken its impact. Don't get me wrong: this isn't the highest of high-concept Ellis, but it's also not the lightweight tongue-in-cheek version of the film adaptation. Retired CIA spook Paul Moses is a monster, plain and simple, and he's done a good deal of justification to get him through the years after leaving the agency. When a new administration comes in hoping f ...more
Dru
a former-cia operative is forced to come out of retirement when the government decides they dont want him alive. awesome, short and sweet.
c wylie misselhorn
Pretty great. I read this after seeing the movie.
Lee Gibson
Short. Good, but short.
Gef
I don't about any of you, but I thought the movie Red was fun. Heck, it was probably the most fun I've had watching a Bruce Willis film in many a year. It kind of got ripped by critics, and especially by fans of the Warren Ellis/Cully Hamner graphic novel, so I figured I ought to check out the book and see just how far off the range the movie went from its source material.

The story starts off with a new C.I.A. director introduced to one of the agency's deepest, darkest secrets: Paul Moses. Paul
...more
Bill
Short and... well, I wouldn't really say sweet, but interesting at the very least. I've become a fan of Warren Ellis's writing, and he always seems to team up with some talented artists for his comics. His only other comic work I've read thus far is Transmetropolitan, which was spectacular. This isn't nearly as compelling as that, but then it's just one relatively short comic, whereas Transmet is a serial of 10 significantly longer volumes, so there's much more story there. This one concerns ret ...more
Todd
This is another masterpiece graphic novel penned by Warren Ellis.

************Warning this review contains plot spoilers and is being filmed as a major motion picture. If you plan on seeing it or reading the story don't not read any farther than this**********************************




It revolves around the life of a retired CIA operative that has been quietly living out his remaining years in solitude. In exchange for keeping his mouth shut about his operations while he was working abroad. But th
...more
Sunil
Jul 22, 2012 Sunil rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: own, 2012
Having enjoyed the ridiculous movie, I wanted to see the comic it was based on inspired by. First things first: Helen Mirren and John Malkovich are nowhere to be found, as the book focuses entirely on the Bruce Willis character, and it has a very different tone. Paul Moses is a retired CIA agent haunted by the things that he's done, his only human connection with the woman who handles his pension checks. And then one day the new boss decides he Knows Too Much and must be killed...but you just do ...more
Dima Yakovenko
В ЦРУ новый директор, который узнает страшную правду об одном из бывших агентов. В целях безопасности, что бы эта информация никогда не всплыла на суд общественности, он отдает приказ, уничтожить этого бывшего агента, который уже долгое время находится на пенсии. Да вот только, старичок-отставник умирать не собирается и вместо этого убивает людей, которых прислали по его душу, да еще и выясняет кто именно возжелал убить его. И отставник Пол Мосес, даже не смотря на своей возраст, решает отомстит ...more
Brendan
Warren Ellis is my favorite comic book writer. From The Authority and The Planetary to his more recent APPARAT comics and Crooked Little Vein, he has a smart approach to dialogue and plotting and a solid sense of what comics are about.

Red, which I hadn't heard of before the movie of the same name came out, tells the brief story of a terrible assassin pushed out of retirement by a thoughtless bureaucrat who thought it would be better to kill him than to let him continue to live in seclusion. Big
...more
David
When I found out they were making a movie out of this graphic novel, I decided to pick it up. While it started out in typical Warren Ellis style (i.e., awesome), it went by far too quickly, without much of a plot, and with a disappointing ending. It seems like the whole reason Ellis wrote the book was so he could comment on the lack of balls in today's politicians. As such, the book is thin on dialogue and story. And therefore, it's thin on pages. So thin, in fact, that literally HALF of the boo ...more
Steve Magay
Unlike the comic book greats such as Mark Millar, Frank Miller or Alan Moore, Warren Ellis simplifies everything. There's no heavy text, the dialogues and text are exactly perfect. He just writes what needs to be told, taking all the fillers and nonsense out of the picture. And there are no twists, just plain old engaging story-telling. With all of these, RED comes out in the spotlight in its unique form, simple and splendid.

Given the short reads in the whole comic book, Ellis makes up for this
...more
Eli
Nov 07, 2010 Eli added it
“Consider Red as a short story being adapted into film.” – Warren Ellis

Ellis’ story has a fairly straightforward plot. Paul Moses is a retired assassin from the C.I.A. – imagine Clint Eastwood’s character from Gran Torino as a retired government killer. The C.I.A. decides he is dangerous and needs to be eliminated. The Company’s attempts to “retire” him allows Moses to get back in the game and show why he is the “best killer on earth.” After Moses kills a countless number of faceless agents, we
...more
Bill Williams
This is a rare instance where a movie is better than the book that served as the inspiration for the project. The story is short and to the point. An old killer is deemed to dangerous to live, so the new political appointee running the CIA sends a team to kill him. Our hero tracks the attempt back to the man who gave the order. Murder ensues.

The story is oversimplified rendering the lead character a practical cypher. The art is pretty and the violence is non-stop, but without a sense of stakes o
...more
Lloyd
Wow.

This is the shortest, quickest comics read I've had in quite some time. But also one of the most action packed.

Retired CIA agent Paul Moses just wanted to live out the rest of his life in peace and forget all the violence he'd seen. The higher-ups had a different plan and now fights for his life, retaliating hard...

This was unexpected from Warren Ellis. It's pretty much a straight forward action comic with plenty of violence and even a sort of comic book version of The Matrix's "bullet time"
...more
Brenton Nichol
A grim and fairly hopeless story, but one with pathos. Ellis keeps this book light and spry, which you could view as a strength or a flaw. It does not concern itself with side plots or any great deal of intricacy. The seed of the story is compelling, enough so that Hollywood came calling, but leave it to the screenwriters to fill it out with, well, everything that was in the movie. Here, Ellis just shoots straight and narrow to the moment of truth at the end. It's really just a sketch of one man ...more
Laura
There is way more ass kicking in this comic than it's length would have you believe. Paul Moses (who is pure Bruce Willis, imo) is pulled back from retirement into kill-mode and methodically wastes everyone in his path. There's not a deep storyline here or character development, just a simple story about one man kicking ass.

EDIT: Apparently they made a movie based (loosely- from what I can tell of the trailer) on this (supposedly out in Oct) with, you guessed it, Willis as Moses. No surprises he
...more
Peacegal
A promising beginning that just drops off and leaves the reader hanging at the end. Hopefully another installment will make its appearance soon.
Jim
Warren Ellis is a master of writing without words.

Well, I guess I should say without dialogue.

Anyway, I finally got around to reading Red, on which the 2010 Bruce Willis action film was based.

It's good. It's really, really good. It's as intense as it is short.

Ellis expresses the desperation of Paul Moses expertly, and Cully Hammer's art only works to enhance the story and the calm fury through which Moses attempts to escape his killers and figure out why he's been targeted.

If you like dark
...more
Jennifer
So I was curious about this because I've loved both of the RED movies, but I know Warren Ellis is often too dark for me. Unfortunately, this once again confirms that I am not destined to be an Ellis devotee. One of the things I love so much about the movies is the balance of lightness and action, but there's absolutely none of that lightness here. I am honestly amazed that the scriptwriters got from this source material to what was made. An example of how different formats and creators can bring ...more
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12772
Has written comics & graphic novels, books, journalism, animation, tv, film, videogames and anything else that looks like it might pay a bill or buy whisky.

Second novel, GUN MACHINE, due from Mulholland Books in autumn of 2012.

First non-fiction book due from FSG in 2014.

Currently a weekly columnist for VICE UK.

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More about Warren Ellis...
Transmetropolitan, Vol. 1: Back on the Street (Transmetropolitan, #1) Transmetropolitan, Vol. 2: Lust for Life (Transmetropolitan, #2) Transmetropolitan, Vol. 3: Year of the Bastard (Transmetropolitan, #3) Planetary, Vol. 1: All Over the World and Other Stories Transmetropolitan, Vol. 5: Lonely City (Transmetropolitan, #5)

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“But I am not a monster because I kill. Killing is easy. I am a monster because I accept the hard choices. (Frank Moses)” 3 likes
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