When it comes to coffee table books there’s really only one rule: capture the attention of bored guests. Be it a coffee table book on photography or abstract painting, it needs to be interesting enough to flip through and draw interest in the reader and kick off a conversation. Titan Books recently published a book—in a not-so-coffee-table-size, honestly—so endearing you’d be hard pressed not to get something out of it. That said, is it good?


Great Showdowns: The Return (Titan Books)


When your in-laws are visiting the last thing you want is them to be bored. When they get bored, questions come up, frustrations arise and unhappiness quickly follows. I was lucky enough to have this book sitting on the coffee table to keep them busy for a good two hours. They flipped through this book trying to figure out what the images were portraying, asking me if I knew, and keeping things light and enjoyable for all. The book, at face value, seems so simplistic you’d probably think it’s a novelty item and nothing more, but let me assure you, this book is a life saver.

Scott C writes and draws this book with an impeccable style that’ll make you smirk, laugh and sometimes even gasp. Oh, and on top of all that, it’s fun for all ages. This is a sequel to another book that’s similar to it, but having not read that I couldn’t tell. The content certainly seems as fresh as an original. I’m sure the first book is as effective as the sequel too. At first you’ll turn the pages wondering to yourself, “is this for kids?” but after a few pages you’re bound to find an image you have no idea where it’s from.

That’s the real fun of it, to figure out what film the image is from

Each image consists of the hero and villain of a film in Scott C’s style. They’re generally cute, but still imbue the soul of the film. Small details make up the character to give you a clue as to what film they’re from. That’s the real fun of it, to figure out what film the image is from, and to try to do it before your in-laws can guess. Now everyone is in a rush to see the next one, and you’ll be fine as far as entertaining is concerned.

This book also comes with a glowing foreward by filmmaker Edgar Wright. Now, it does seem fishy he’s so positive when Scott C has drawn every single one of his films, but I’ll let that slide for now. After the foreward we get a how-to about the book written by Scott C and it’s cleverly written and adds another layer of cuteness to the overall read.

9.5

  • Cute, endearing and clever art
  • Fun for nearly everyone
  • A picture book is still only a picture book

Is It Good?

It is, and its function could be used across different uses too. I think it’s an excellent conversation starter to sit on your coffee table, but kids could take this to school, people could get a brightened day commuting to work and on and on. The fact is, if a piece of art or entertainment can capture the interest of many different folks, it’s doing something right.