Day: 28 September 2011

The Thing from Another World: Eternal Vows 2 (January 1994)

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Turns out de Vries has the reverse problem of John Arcudi on The Thing. de Vries is better with MacReady around.

MacReady shows up—in a private helicopter, in sunglasses and maybe with a laser gun. Gulacy loves sunglasses. They make no sense in the context and it’s not particularly good art, but it’s an amusing misfire.

All the exposition about the Thing’s society and purpose is somewhat interesting. de Vries decides each creature makes a little society for itself, never letting a piece get more important than it. It’s probably laying groundwork for a Thing to team up with MacReady so who cares…

But at least de Vries is thinking.

It’s a shame this information is presented to the reader in goofy narration or bad expository dialogue.

Oh, and I was mistaken before, it takes place in New Zealand, not Australia.

Hopefully it’ll get scary soon; it’s not now.

CREDITS

Writer, David de Vries; penciller, Paul Gulacy; inker, Dan Davis; colorist, Matthew Hollingsworth; letterer, Steve Haynie; editors, Randy Stradley and Bob Cooper; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.

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Batman: The Dark Knight 1 (November 2011)

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So DC hires a big name artist (or co-plotter and penciller) away from Marvel and then he turns in a talking heads book for their big relaunch?

It’s not all talking heads, it’s actually more talking bodies because David Finch apparently doesn’t want to try to draw too many faces. His Bruce Wayne has an argument with a cop who looks suspiciously like… Bruce Wayne, only with blond hair.

There’s barely any action. Even when Finch goes to Arkham, it’s boring and somewhat hard to follow. He doesn’t do establishing shots very well.

Wait, I forgot to mention the big twist… Two-Face has been pumping iron in Arkham and now looks like he’s got the Bane juice or whatever.

As for Paul Jenkins’s scripting? His Bruce Wayne narration sounds… old. Like Dark Knight Returns—not plain Dark Knight—old. He sounds about forty-two.

Still, could be worse.

CREDITS

Knight Terrors; writers, Paul Jenkins and David Finch; penciller, Finch; inker, Richard Friend; colorist, Alex Sinclair; letterer, Sal Cipriano; editors, Rickey Purdin and Mike Marts; publisher, DC Comics.

The Thing from Another World: Eternal Vows 1 (December 1993)

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Eternal Vows is the Thing comic I had expected from Dark Horse. Not a direct sequel to the movie, but some lame story set in the “same universe.”

David de Vries sets this one in Australia (presumably because it’s close to the Antarctic location of the movie, but he doesn’t explain) and it’s a murder mystery in a small fishing town. Or dock town. Something.

It’s Paul Gulacy on pencils and Dan Davis does a fine enough job inking him. This art is Gulacy-lite, a little earlier than I’m used to seeing it, but it’s still competent enough Gulacy.

What de Vries does though, in an amazing move, is give the “Thing” thoughts. He apparently didn’t realize if you go into the mind of the monster, you get the converted from Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

Besides the gross out horror, de Vries totally misses the point.

It’s bewildering.

CREDITS

Writer, David de Vries; penciller, Paul Gulacy; inker, Dan Davis; colorist, Matthew Hollingsworth; letterer, Steve Haynie; editors, Randy Stradley and Bob Cooper; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.

Green Lantern: New Guardians 1 (November 2011)

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New Guardians opens in flashback. Only no one mentions it’s in flashback, which made me think I was going to suffer through Tony Bedard relaunching Kyle Rayner. Instead, I just had to suffer through Bedard’s attempt at writing a female character.

Actually, Bedard’s got a strange undercurrent of misogyny in the comic. As opposed to the rest of the DC relaunch, where it’s neon.

The issue’s a bit of a rip-off at $2.99. Not just because the dialogue’s bad and Tyler Kirkham’s anatomy is lousy. It’s because Bedard doesn’t even set up the stupid comic. Either it’s about Kyle Rayner with an assorted team of other color Lanterns or he just gets a bunch of color rings.

Bedard doesn’t even keep up the casual misogyny, which was at least interesting.

There’s nothing good about this comic book. Guardians starts at to the bottom of the toilet and stays there.

CREDITS

Writer, Tony Bedard; penciller, Tyler Kirkham; inker, Batt; colorist, Nei Ruffino; letterer, Dave Sharpe; editors, Sean Mackiewicz and Pat McCallum; publisher, DC Comics.

The Thing from Another World: Climate of Fear 4 (December 1992)

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Here’s one thing about comic book sequels to movies. Look, I know you can do things in a comic book you can’t do in a movie, but respect the level of reality in the source. You shouldn’t all of a sudden have a giant monster just because Somerville can draw it badly.

In other words, Climate of Fear kind of limps to its finish. Arcudi gets in a good final moment, something not as good as the Thing movie, but a tonal homage.

And most of the issue isn’t bad. Arcudi’s pacing is great. He takes his time establishing and following through. He just can’t get away with a giant monster.

Instead of a sequel to The Thing, it becomes an awful fifties radiation monster movie with bad special effects.

There is more of that sparse third person narration. Arcudi uses it sparingly and well.

I nearly recommend this comic.

CREDITS

Writer, John Arcudi; penciller, Jim Somerville; inker, Robert Jones; colorist, Matt Webb; letterer, Richard Starkings; editor, Randy Stradley; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.