There are some things you just don’t talk about. Religion. Politics. Death. Any approach to this examples and so many others could be difficult because you would need a strong opinion on the matter, and responsibility about possible results or reactions. You have to be prepared. You need to be strong enough to take what it arrives.
Lee Kolinsky has done it in a great comic, with an interesting phenomenon: the old people, seniors, grandpas, grown adults, and the fact that they are part of society; yet; always. It’s no secret our structure has never been ready for them; they have no space, no role. Several reactions have been developed, jobs, conscience campaigns, options for them. Etc. It’s still in slow motion, but I do think it’s happening around the world.
“Former Colonel Jason Roman has waged war! He fought for the American dream and watched his men perish in battle. Now he’s watching them perish in rest homes. Follow the Colonel as he recruits a wild bunch of geriatrics and gives them an opportunity to die with dignity”, this is the selling description of the comic In the Wake of Heroes, good one right? And the comic itself is very good. This hypothetical case will have so many distinct developments, that none of the ones in the story are too fantastic.
I’m not fan of the art, I believe there is a lack of profundity on it, I´d like it more robust, with more perspectives (and it’s a matter of edition too) and because of that it doesn’t seem to have great impact. But it definitely has personality and expressiveness, there is no doubt about it. The story on the other hand, will give you something to think about. Would you choose the high risk of one intense, exciting and useful day instead of staying “home” day after day? You will want to hear more of each old-timer soldier, even talk some, and socialize about it.
Of course the action in the comic will get you too. You thought The Expendables were old schoolers? Wait and see. The theme was what I loved the most of this comic and put some interesting and funny-to-answer questions in my mind, that I choose not to share with you, but throw them to Lee; here some of his deadly-opinions:
What do you think about euthanasia?
LK: I feel everybody should have control of their own lives. If someone is suffering physical or even mentally to the point that they cannot cure their ailments and live productively, there should be an option for assisted euthanasia.
You think seniors should have a more extended productive life?
LK: In the Wake of Heroes confronts the old-old population of seniors from 85 and up who live in assisted living facilities. Sure, many 85-year olds are able to go on vacations, play with their grandchildren, spend holidays with their families, in some cases even run a marathon. They have aged well, but it’s not all cheese and crackers, like some of the higher end living facilities offer their residents during snack time. In the Wake of Heroes discusses the people who haven’t aged well. It touches on the people who live with loneliness, chronic pain, Alzheimer’s and other problems. This is where the suffering is and I’d like to see how we can improve programs, increase staff and provide seniors with something other than coloring with crayons.
How are you going to be when you get old?
LK: Grumpy old man, but as long as I have use of my brain, my hands and a computer, I think I’ll be okay.
How do you like to go?
LK: In my sleep, but I have feeling it will be when I’m eating a bowl of ice cream. I would like to have an epitaph though, along the lines from the movie The Royal Tenenbaums “Died Tragically Rescuing His Family from the Wreckage of a Destroyed Sinking Battleship.”
What’s the most amazing death you ever heard of (read, saw, etc) or the most amazing you can imagine?
LK: You know I don’t really think of amazing deaths. Death is so final. I typically think of immortality. That’s why I like the idea of being cryogenically frozen. Maybe one day you’d get thawed out and some would say that in this day and age we all live forever.
So yes; I recommend you to get the comic. Here’s a little more about the author: Lee Kolinsky is an award-winning writer. With a diverse and creative background, Lee has written the screenplay for the independent film The Blue Lizard, worked as a copywriter for Doubleday Entertainment and Columbia House DVD’s. He was a copyeditor for PR Newswire and a reporter for the Nassau Herald Community Newspapers. Lee currently works as a technical copywriter for MSC Industrial Supply and of course has created In the Wake of Heroes.