Sunday, February 13, 2011

Silver Slippers vs. Glass Slippers

In the second mini-series of the Fables spinoff comic, Cinderella: Fables Are Forever, Fabletown's own resident former-princess turned secret agent, Cinderella, returns in an all new case. This time, she's confronted by non-other than her old espionage rival, Dorothy Gale!

Apparently, the two of them clashed back in Russia during the better dead than red days of the mid-80s, from which Cinderella barely survived. Now in modern day(which is supposed to be in unison with the current Fables timeline)Cinderella is visited by Ivan Durak(aka: "Ivan the Idiot"). He wants her to protect him from Dorothy, who is gunning for him under orders from the Russian shadow Fabletown. Now, Dorothy has some smaller Fable creatures working for her, including a slightly cracked Glass Cat.

Its hard to say how this completely fits in to the given Fables world for several reasons. One is that in the Jack Of Fables series, Dorothy had been imprisioned for several years in the Golden Boughs Retirement Village along with Tin Man, Scarecrow, and Lion. There, she appeared to be the stereotypical Dorothy most people know her as. So, whether she was faking her goodytwoshows attitude that whole time, and if she's a trained spy/assassin why she couldn't just bust out of there is unknown. Also, the appearance of Glass Cat with Dorothy on Earth seems to really contradict his very recent appearance in Fables issue #101 where its shown that he had been captured by the Nome King for a long time, and had just then escaped with Jack Pumpkinhead and Sawhorse. The three of them along with Buffin the former flying monkey were going to start a rebellion against the Nome King and free Oz from his rule. How this matches up with that storyline is also very confusing. Unless there is some kind of miscommunication going on between the seperate Fables titles(which is not uncommon in the comic biz), then there are some serious continuity issues involved in this. Still, its nice to see Dorothy finally taking a more active role in the Fablesverse.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Book Review: Shadow Demon Of Oz

After Magician Of Oz, James Wallace II continues his trilogy of self-published Oz novels with Shadow Demon Of Oz. This once again deals with Jamie Diggs, Oscar Diggs' great-grandson, as he returns to Oz for a brand new adventure.

The story splits at first between Jamie's life in America, while at the same time in Oz as Dorothy encounters a strange new menace which has taken the soul away from a living boat she rides on to visit Scarecrow. The creature is called the Shadow Demon which just dropped in from a passing comet. It's really the disembodied spirit of the Wicked Witch of the East which had attached itself to this comet right after Dorothy's house smooshed her over a century ago. Jamie ends up coming to Oz via a transdimensional balloon ship piloted by Cap'n Bill, along with his friend Buddy who is in his magicians' club back in Indiana. Once in Oz, Jamie is made the official Royal Magician for Ozma, and proclaimed as Oz the Magnificent. He in turn presents Buddy to Ozma as a "gift of friendship", as Buddy has taken a serious shine to the Princess. Jamie is given control of the balloon as it used to belong to his predecessor, and head out on a trip to the Winkie River to investigate what happened to Dorothy's boat friend. After figuring out that some evil entity is loose in Oz, they head back to the Emerald City. The Shadow Demon reaches Mt. Munch, and begins to terrorize the Hyups who live there. James gets wind of this, and flies there with Buddy to confront it. After recieving a little help by Ozma teleporting Toto and Bungle to assist them, Jamie is able to defeat the Shadow Demon, mainly due to Bungle giving up one of his disposable nine lives. The spirits that the demon had consumed are set free, and the boat gets its life back. Jamie and Buddy are then sent from Mt. Munch back to Indiana by the magic balloon instead of to the Emerald City, but Jamie knows he'll return someday.

This book was in my opinion a better story than the original. The first one seemed to lack a some direction as far as what to do with the characters, as here they're given more motivation. Jamie wants to live up to his title, Buddy is glad to be along for the adventure but is trying to be worthy of being Ozma's friend, and Dorothy is given a lot more depth than normal with her concern for people(or boats)that she's just met. The story does take a little time to actually get the main characters all together, and it maybe puts more emphasis on Jamie's life in Indiana than was needed. But's a good follow-up, and the story continues in Family Of Oz.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Oz Video Of The Month: Wicked does Disney

Disney animator Heidi Gilbert recently put together this original animatic based on the Wicked musical in an attempt to see about having it done as an animated movie.