Luftwaffe 1946

Published by Antarctic Press 1997

Ted Nomura, writer/artist; Ben Dunn, editor/colorist.

This is an alternate universe story in which Hermann Göring's death in 1918 and the 1937 discovery of a buried flying saucer allow Nazi Germany to pour more resources into development of Wunderwaffen. The Axis powers are more successful and the Allies less so, so the war drags on. This comic book series (actually several mini-series and special editions) is really a framework for Ted Nomura to draw highly detailed pictures of hypothetical German aircraft as if they had gone into operation. The depictions of aircraft, ships, tanks, etc., are outstanding. His character work is strongly influenced by Japanese manga and thus drifts away from the realism displayed in his vehicles. The writing does not measure up to the artwork. Apparently, Hermann Göring was the root of all the evil in the Nazi empire and Hitler wasn't really that bad. At least, that's the impression given by the first six issues. The books go too far over the line in trying to tell a balanced story and instead turn the Nazis and Japanese into the heroes, instead of the villains. I found the fauning over the supposed German technical and flying superiority to be offensive. Nomura's glorification of the Japanese is perhaps understandable, but not very convincing. And if that were not enough, the story is told in a confusing and choppy manner, so it is hard to tell what is going on at any given place in the series. Perhaps the writer had an overall plot for the series, but it is not obvious in the writing.

My recommendation for this series comes with a big caveat. I enjoyed the art and the depictions of aerial battle, but found the writing not only weak, but off-putting.

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