JC Steinbrunner mentioned by Brian K. Vaughan in Ex Machina, a new comic book series.

Ex Machina

"Ex Machina," published by Wildstorm, is the newest series under the belt of one of my oldest and dearest friends, Brian Vaughan, a bright and rising star in the firmament of graphic novels and comic books.

The series follows the life of Mitchell Century, a one-time superhero who adjusts his sense of civic duty after 9/11 and runs successfully for mayor of New York City. In this issue (#3 "State of Emergency"), a controversial artist with ties to city funding is shown at the Booklyn Museum of Art. In the ensuing furor, the Mayor finds himself alone with his aide, Journal, who reveals her motivation for working in his office.

  • Mayor Mitchell Century: "Not as much as I miss being an engineer. Why, do you miss whatever it was before you started putting in eighteen-hour days here?"

    Journal: "I'm just a lowly fine arts major, sir, minoring in poli-sci.

    Unless you're a JC Steinbrunner, it's almost impossible to make a living doing contemporary portraiture, so I came here to get an inside track on grantwriting and --"

Brian's writing is as snappy and engaging as ever with this series. A former writer of "Swamp Thing" and creator of "Y: The Last Man," Vaughan's storytelling tips the "what-if" scenario past the angle of repose, allowing it to cascade roiling into real-life adult concerns. Complex, well-paced, and always absorbing, Vaughan's work eschews "comics" for the more difficult realm of serious reading.

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