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Friday, July 30, 2010

Comics Reviews - 7/30/10


The comics reviewed are chosen by David not by That's Entertainment management or staff. The opinions expressed are his alone. If you have an opposing view you are welcome to respond to David directly by Email at the address above.

Issue Number: 1
Title Story: Charmed Lives
Publisher: Zenoscope
Creator: Constance M. Burge
Writer: Paul Ruditis & Raven Gregory
Artist: Dave Hoover
Colors: Milen Parvanou
Letters: Jim Campbell
Price (USD): $3.50
Release Date: NOW ON SALE
Genre: Fantasy

I looked at a couple TV based comics this week. This is the first one. I am not
a fan of Charmed. I probably have seen parts of only one or two episodes. I know it is about three ladies with magical powers but beyond that I do not know much. So I am a good judge for an objective view of this book as a new comic. If you want to know if it is a good compliment to the show and is faithful to the concepts you will have to check for yourself. Visually the book is pretty decent. There is good coloring and the art has good layout and form. There is no editorial information about the characters so the story has to stand on its own for new readers. Our three witches have different situations going on. Paige is conducting classes in magic when a bored student goads her into letting her try a spell from a book - big mistake. Meanwhile both Phoebe and Piper have problems with their infant kids coming into their powers. One keeps teleporting mommy back to the house when she tries to leave for work. The other decides to grow an ever-expanding vine from a pot of stew.  But unless you think this is all fun there is a major plot developing as a couple with ties to the underworld set in motion a plan that no doubt will intersect with our witches who are trying to live more normal lives. I am sure fans of the series will enjoy it and new readers will find a basic comic with some light moments and foreboding plot elements.

Issue Number: 1
Publisher: IDW
Story: Alan Ball, Kate Barnow & Elisabeth Finch
Writers: Mariah Huehner & David Tischman
Artist: David Messina
Inker: David Messina & Gaetano Carlucci
Colors: Giovanna Niro
Letters: Neil Uyetake
Price (USD): $3.99
Release Date: NOW ON SALE
Genre: Horror

This is another TV show I have not seen because it is on HBO once again the new readers are on their own. The setting is Merlotte's Bar and Grill in Bon Temps on a rainy night. The narrative clues us in that this town is far from normal. It seems to be a haven for vampires and other creatures of the night. As the waitress takes out the garbage she is startled by the sudden appearance of a friend named Sam. It is then we learn she can read his thoughts. As the scene moves inside we get to meet other members of the crew and another local named Eric shows up with an urgent need to talk to our waitress. I infer Eric may be a vampire and he calls Sam a shifter. It seems everyone has a secret but among each other it is unspoken. The real action takes place when Sookie the waitress discovers that one of the customers has been pretty much drained of her life force and the guy sitting in the booth with her has an extra large mouth with lots of fangs. When he stands up several very long sharp tentacles grow out of his back - like Dr. Octopus on steroids. This guy is something very ancient who is just now showing himself. One more player arrives, Sookie's vampire boyfriend, Bill and the fun really starts. Well the plot is basic and almost predictable. I am sure knowing the characters and their history would add some depth of understanding but without it you can follow most of it. However it seems there is more emphasis on what is not being said bit understood among the characters. The art is good enough to get the job done. The atmosphere and emotion is related well. It could be worth following a few issues to get the full understanding.

Issue Number: 1
Title Story: Part 1: From the Red Planet, Death!
Publisher: IDW
Writer: Dara Naraghi
Artist: Mark Dos Santos
Colors: Dom Regan
Letters: Robbie Robbins
Price (USD): $3.99
Release Date: NOW ON SALE
Genre: Science Fiction

This title draws on the old Midnight Movies from MGM dating back to 1958. The
story very much has the feel of those early cheesy sci-fi flicks. The story
follows the six-person crew of the Challenge II on a rescue mission to Mars. The earlier Challenge I mission lost contact with Earth as it came in for a landing on the red planet. The new crew has no trouble finding the wreckage but not so much with the original crew except for a sole survivor. Meanwhile back on the rescue ship the Quartermaster is fooling around with the Chief Engineer's wife. There is some time played out with the illicit affair and the difference of opinion between the captain and the Chief Scientist. She wants to explore as much as they can while on Mars bit the captain wants to rescue any survivors and leave. But there is more to the story. One startling discovery changes opinions about what happened. The survivor tells his story but the new evidence may contradict it. By the final page we get a glimpse of the title character. This is a fun story if you overlook the attempt at melodrama nearly every page. Still, it reflects the style of cheap horror movies down to some of the characters having a smoke in their space ship. It could use more build up to the appearance of IT. Still, the art is good and the script is readable.


If you think you know the answer to the trivia question send your guess via
Email to me at and you could win the prize. The first six
correct answers will be assigned a number and a roll of the dice will determine
the winner. You should put your real name in your message so we know who you are. Prizes must be claimed at our store within 30 days of winning. The prize will be a $10 credit slip, which will be redeemable for merchandise at regular retail or in-store ongoing specials only.  Only one prize per person will be allowed per every 4 weeks. I will be the sole judge of the correct answer even if more than one answer could be correct. Submit only one answer per Email please but guess as often as you like.

Last week's trivia question:
Like many heroes, he got his power, as did a few other people in an accident. Whose power was the ability to hear evil?

It was the NIGHTMAN from the Malibu Ultraverse that could hear evil thoughts.
Among those who knew was our winner Ron Rucci.

This was your no prize question:
What is the only song John Lennon recorded completely by himself during his time
with The Beatles?
Lennon recorded "Julia" entirely by himself. It is the only song he recorded
completely on his own during his time with The Beatles. Bryan Greiner has a no
prize heading his way. Bryan Greiner wins the no prize.

Which character pioneered the Mother Box and the Boom Tube?

Here is your no prize question:
What was the first National TV show that Elvis appeared on?

Folks, you never know who among the readers is knowledgeable about the question so don't hesitate to send in an answer - even days after it appears.

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