Monday, November 26, 2012

Comic Review: The Wizard Of Oz (Sterling Graphics)

Sterling Graphics recently did a one-shot graphic novel adaptation of The Wizard Of Oz as part of their All-Action Classics line by Ben Caldwell. This line up also includes Tom Sawyer, Dracula, and The Odyssey. It's a little hard to think of WOZ as an "action" story, but Caldwell does give a good go at it.

It is slightly faithful to the original L. Frank Baum story, although there are some major differences. One is just before the twister shows up, Dorothy and Em are recollecting a circus show featuring "The Great Humbug", complete with a poster on their wall, who Dorothy recognizes later on as the Wizard. Another is the Witch of the North after meeting Dorothy refers to Glinda as a "mostly" good witch, thus acknowledging her existence earlier than she was supposed to. That, and the Witch of the North showing up after the Wizard leaves and telling Dorothy that she had the power to return home on her own, pretty much copy-pasting the ending to the MGM movie but with the actual Witch of the North. Tin Woodman appears to be more French-like with a beret, and the Wicked Witch of the West looks like Ursula from The Little Mermaid.

This would make for a fine gift for kids, even though Caldwell's artwork seems a bit estranged from the normal look of the Oz characters, but will enjoy his work more on his original series of The Dare Detectives. Oz purists might not agree with the changes in the story even though they are slightly minor, aside from leaving out the entire last quarter of the book on the quest to Glinda's castle. Either way, the kids should like it.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Oz Video Of The Month: Oz the Great and Powerful (new trailer!)

Here's the latest trailer for the upcoming Oz, The Great And Powerful movie from Disney due out Mar. 8, 2013.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Comic Review: No Place Like Home (Volume 1)

Image Comics' recent mini-series of No Place Like Home has concluded its first edition. This 5-issue mini-series is supposed to be the beginning of an ongoing series(or series of mini-series), and given how fast most of the issues sold out, chances are it will be back in force. Written by Angelo Tirotto and drawn by Richard Jordan, this is a dark horror movie approach to Wizard Of Oz set in modern day.

The rebellious Dee returns to her hometown in Kansas to attend her parents' funeral who were killed by a freak twister. She is reunited with her friend Lizzie, although the local drunk Thomas seems to know something more about her parents untimely demise than the Sheriff Frank is leading on about. Thomas is suspected of the murder of two workers at a diner, and goes on the run, but holds Dee and Liz at gunpoint to get them to dig up Dee's parents to see what really happened to them. They find their corpses which look like they were mangled to death. This seems to be related to a series of animal attacks throughout the county. Liz is then abducted by a flying monkey, and Dee and Frank set out to rescue her. The flying monkey takes Liz to an underground cavern where a portal has opened where several flying monkeys await on the other side. On their way, Dee and Frank witness a monkey attacking a school bus beheading an old woman, which leads Dee to figure out where they are hiding. They trace them to a old farmhouse and smash into the basement to find Liz fighting the monkeys. Liz grabs some glowing marbles which opens a portal that she gets sucked in with the rest of the monkeys, leaving Dee behind. Liz is flown to a tall castle where she is confronted by a fashionable green lady welcoming her to Oz.

This is so far turning out to be a decent series, even though it finished its first volume a few months late. Although I have to stress that this is not a comic for younger readers. There are several scenes of gore and violence, and plenty of cursing(if that's a problem for you). This, and it only has a small opening into the world of Oz, just with the flying monkeys and the Wicked Witch of the West after five issues. It seems more if like Steven King was doing an adaptation of Wizard Of Oz, with not enough emphasis about Oz itself. Hopefully this might get resolved by the next volume.

Oz: The Great And Powerful posters

A series of posters for the upcoming Oz: The Great And Powerful have just been revealed. This shows the new movie versions of the Wicked Witch of the West, flying monkeys, and Munchkins.