I had a hell of a time pitching Concrete before I sold it. It is a bit hard to describe its real-world/superhero fiction balance. So I like Farabee's take, here:
CONCRETE’s always a bear to describe because it doesn’t fall into any standard genre clichés or Hollywood tag lines. In a pinch, I’d call it a rationalist’s version of magic realism. It’s the story of what a pudgy, intellectual guy does when he finds his mind housed in a hulking, rock-like body that’s at once an amazing gift (it’s tough as hell, strong enough to lift a car, and grants eyesight sharper than a hawk’s) and a sensory-deprived prison (no sexual organs means no sex, the visual alone is freakish, and the craggy skin reduces sense of touch to a bare minimum). How’d he get this way? Doesn’t matter. If there’s any one event in the series that showcases the “magical” side of magic realism, the change is it, and it is revealed, but it’s not vitally important. Everything that follows is the “realism,” and that’s our story.
That's not bad. Where were you in '83, Dave?
The image: first of several sketches of the Morpheus/Assassin cover to Computer Games magazine that previwed The Matrix Online. More, and finally the finshed art, will follow. Click to enlarge.