[tabs] [tab title=”Adventure Time Spooktacular”]

There’s been an interesting trend this year with all ages titles putting out horror spin-offs that manage to be genuinely disturbing. First there was Afterlife With Archie which came out earlier this October, and now there’s the Adventure Time Spooktacular. The comic features a series of unrelated stories revolving around the general theme of Halloween and horror. For the most part, the stories are charming and fun. There’s a sense of a missed opportunity in that the stories never reflect the darker tones found in several episodes of the animated series, which would have served well in an issue pertaining to Halloween. This said, the standout story of the anthology, which is illustrated by Frazer Irving, has the potential to drive a reader insane. Adventure Time’s simplistic and abstract art style that’s reproduced in the comic is foregone in lieu of Irving’s more realistic art that successfully manages to be extremely unsettling. Staring into Starchy the Gravedigger’s wide eyes is staring into the abyss itself. Again, this story isn’t truly dark, it’s more disturbing on a base level that’s extremely effective, especially because a story about a missing mustache shouldn’t be this unnerving.

[/tab] [tab title=”Samurai Jack #1″]

Animator Genndy Tartakovsky’s more recent works are characterized by their loyal fanbases  and criminally short lifespans on television. The early 2000’s series Samurai Jack is no exception to this and despite not being on the air for nearly a decade, this comic published by IDW was much anticipated by said fanbase. One of the challenges of adapting Samurai Jack to a comic is that it’s virtually impossible to translate the distinct cinematography and the sound designs which were hallmarks of the original series to print. It’s difficult to say whether or not this book is a loyal adaptation. While it manages to emulate the art style of the original series, it at times tends to rely a great deal on exposition. The original series emphasized a more minimalistic means of conveying ideas. It’s difficult to say who this book is written for, considering it reads as a title for younger children despite most of the people who grew up with the original series are college age, or at least in their late teens. At the same time, if you are at all nostalgic for this series and watching clips of fights from the show on Youtube isn’t cutting it anymore, this book can whet your appetite.

[/tab] [tab title=”Sandman Overture #1″]

Anyone who’s familiar with comics knows of Neil Gaiman’s award winning series Sandman, and its significance as a definitive book that pioneered the way for other more mature mainstream works with the Vertigo imprint of DC Comics. When Gaiman announced he would be writing a new miniseries revisiting the King of Dreams, it was questionable if he could meet the astronomically high expectations of the fans of the series. Fortunately, it’s as though Gaiman never stopped writing the series with this issue. His distinct prose style and the etherial nature of the dialogue would make any fan feel right at home, while making any new time reader feel immediately immersed. J.H. Williams’ art compliments Gaiman perfectly. His framing techniques that utilize a larger image to place the panels inside is highly reminiscent of several pages in the original series, but Williams goes to another level entirely. The issue revisits several of iconic characters from the series including Death, Mervyn Pumpkinhead and even The Corinthian in all his horrifying glory. These nods to the mythos of the series manage not to feel forced and are welcomed, but the issue also plays on the lore by the issue’s end in a way that catches both Dream and the reader by surprise.

[/tab] [tab title=”Superior Spider-Man #20″]

Whether it comes with the territory of being a super villain predisposed to defeat, or that he inherited Peter Parker’s bad luck with his body, it seems that the fall of Octavius is almost inevitable. The issue presents more challenges for Spider-man that are exacerbated by his hubris. As this storyline has progressed, one of the more difficult factors for readers to contend with is the obliviousness many characters exhibit to how dramatically different Spider-man has been acting since Octavius took over his body. It only becomes worse when more characters from Parker’s past have to with Octavius. Such is the case when he runs into Spidey’s sometime flame and ally Black Cat, and deals with her as though she is a common criminal, leaving her merely enraged by his actions. At least we see more of Carlie Cooper who more or less figured out that something’s not right, even though his long time lover Mary Jane is still none the wiser. The return of an obscure Spidey villain with a history with Octavius by the issue’s end is underdeveloped and lacks the significant impact that Slott seems to be attributing to their return.

[/tab] [/tabs]

Write A Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.