Monday, October 12, 2009

triple feature yet again! Moon Knight, Dr. Voodoo and Zenescope's Little Mermaid

In case you missed it...

The Little Mermaid Collection
Written by: Raven Gregory & Linda Ly
Pencils by: Claudio Sepulveda
Colors by: Nei Ruffino
Letters by: Alphabet Studios
Published by Zenescope Entertainment
Review by Lan Pitts

This ain't your baby sister's Little Mermaid. Not by a long shot.

In the spirit of Zenescope's style of reimagining fairy tales and such, comes The Little Mermaid. Now, this isn't the story you may know unless you're familiar with the Hans Christian Anderson version of the story. It starts out the way most remember it, a shipwreck with a prince going overboard and rescued by a mermaid princess. Ah, nautical love.

Well, I'm sure you know how the story goes from there: mermaid princess falls in love with prince, makes deal with Sea Witch, becomes mute, gets her heart broken, and...gets ripped in half by the Sea Witch and her remains eaten by sharks? Oh right, this is Zenescope. Meanwhile, there is another story that parallel's the Mermaid's tale going on featuring the same themes as love, lust, betrayal, and of course Grimm Fairy Tales' recurring antagonist, Belinda. Belinda approaches Lucy, a woman who lives with her young daughter Sara, who is trying to get out of her mother's white trash shadow. Both the mermaid and Sara take some ill advice and both pay the price in their own way.

Originally published as Grimm Fairy Tales #25 and 26, it is now collected into this 56-page issue. There is some really good stuff in here. Claudio Sepulveda draws some amazing landscapes and the opening sequence with the shipwreck is phenomenal. Of course, being aided by Nei Ruffino on colors doesn't hurt either. While Sepulveda does need to improve on his facial constructions, I wasn't turned off or taken out of the story. Speaking of the story, I feel it was too loose in some parts, mainly the motivation of Lucy to use Sara the way she did and why she was listening to Belinda of all people.

All in all, with this collection, you can really see that Zenescope is attempting to step up their game with fantastic visuals and layered stories worth reading.

Doctor Voodoo: Avenger of the Supernatural #1
Written by Rick Remender
Art by Jefte Palo
Colors by Jean-Francois Beaulieu
Letters by Dave Lanphear
Cover by Marko Djurdjevic
Published by Marvel Comics
Review by Lan Pitts

At first, when Brother Voodoo was announced as the new Sorcerer Supreme, I was taken aback a little. I was really pulling for Wiccan to assume the mantle, or hey, even Dr. Doom (just because he is Marvel's greatest super villain). Though, flipping through the pages at my local comic store, purchasing it and actually reading it when I got home...yeah, Marvel chose wisely. I wasn't too familiar with the character, so my impression was open-minded when it came to how Rick Remender worked the Jericho Drumm character and I have to say, he's a bona fide bad ass.

This issue picks up after Jericho Drumm's cameo in New Avengers #53 earlier this year, where the legendary Eye of Agamotto chose him for the role of new Sorcerer Supreme. I love how Remender got down to some serious supernatural business from the get-go with the Doc confining old school Dr. Strange arch-nemesis, Dormammu, and we can see the different types of magicks that Voodoo relies on in comparison to Strange's. It's truly eeriely colored and drawn. One can really sense the feel of the type of power he now possesses. Of course you have Strange in an Obi-Wan-like role, but you can almost hear the doubt in his voice over Agamotto's choosing. Strange understands though that the Eye chose Jericho for a reason and he has to live with that.

Of course, Strange isn't the only one questioning the Eye's choice in new Sorcerer Supreme. Enter: Dr. Doom. The two have a mystical throwdown of serious proportions with Doom dominating until the very end. When he thinks the Eye is now his for the taking, Doom gets a rude awakening by showing him something that makes him do a hasty retreat. I love Remender's vernacular for Voodoo and his use of Vadou terminology. It provides a sense of faithful representation of the character and his world.

Jefte Palo's art is something else, too. I love Dr. Voodoo's new costume and how he interrupts the outlandish scenarios and creatures. It is almost as if he was meant for a book like this. Doctor Voodoo works great as a premiere issue for various reasons, but there are plenty of unanswered questions and I'll be sure to be around to find out.

Vengeance of the Moon Knight #2
Written by Gregg Hurwitz
Art by Jerome Opena
Colors by Paul Mounts
Cover by Leinil Yu with Jason Keith
Letters by VC's Joe Caramagna
Published by Marvel Comics
Review by Lan Pitts

"As Moon Knight, Spector prowls the night, meting out brutal justice to those who would prey on the innocent." Really? If that was the case, how come in the last issue, it was mainly in broad daylight and in this issue, again, it's mostly taken place during day time hours?

With that out of the way, I do want to express how much this series is off to a great start. Coming off the conclusion of the last issue, Sentry confronts Moon Knight and basically tells him can empathize what it is like to have inner demons and dealing with borderline insanity. The dialouge is well-paced and great introduction to the issue with Sentry flying all around, averting numerous disasters, all the while explaining to Moon Knight that if he goes back to his psychotic ways, he'll put him down.

Later, Norman Osborn is disappointed in the Hood and wants Moon Knight by any means. So, naturally, Hood brings in some additional help by means of the Profile. At first, I have to admit, the way the coloring works I thought it was the Purple Man. I always liked reading what the Profile was thinking, even if it was only for comedic value. Hiring the Profile, we also see that Osborn and the Hood will do whatever it takes to bring Moon Knight down, however, there is doubt they actually can. He's composed and seemingly at peace with the role of playing the hero again...though of course there's the end of the issue where, I'm pretty sure, the next issue will be insane and Spector's first real test on holding his madness at bay.

Hurwitz also does a fantastic job at reintroducing Moon Knight's supporting cast and does it in a way that makes you feel he's been doing it for ages, though for some of you new fans, it may seem a little confusing, but a quick browse through MK's history would remedy that. He handles Marlene, Frenchie, and Crawley with ease. Each of them have their own level of tension with Marc (or Jake) and it's wonderful character development to watch unfold. Hurwitz's script is paired well with Jerome Opena's art, that once again shines beautifully. This dynamite pair bring their own vision of action and character to the book and is easily one of the titles to watch out for. I know it may seem strange to some to say that with only two issues in, but rest assure, if you're not picking this up or having this in your pull box, you might want to rethink that.

1 comment:

Tor Hershman said...

Ahhhhh, the tales of the Grimms, ehhh.

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you'll be glad you did.