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Aquaman, A Textbook Case of A Hero’s Journey …

22 Dec

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

* Spoiler Alert

‘Tis the season to enjoy being Aquaman. Jason Momoa is clearly having fun in the role, and his charm sells this latest DC Extended Universe product. Zack Snyder has executive producer credit and James Wan is directing. This Fast and Furious director sticks to what he knows best and translates the screenplay by David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick and Will Beall into glorious sequences straight out of Lord of the Rings, Clash of the Titans (no surprise here, when considering David’s past work), Blade Runner and Indiana Jones.

Of the latter, it was too short and I wished for more. The visual treat of the underwater sequences is certainly overwhelming and lives up to recreating Neo Atlantis perfectly. I hoped for a more classically nuanced work (in reference to Plato’s Timaeus) and while not out of place, the archeological moments were not too much of a letdown. Balancing the origin of a superhero story with the big tease of them in the Sahara must have been tough.

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The Ring of Nibelung is on a Dark Horse Re-Release!

8 Dec

Available to pre-order on Amazon

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Release Date: January 02, 2019
Click here to preorder

Richard Wagner’s The Ring of Nibelung has seen countless adaptations into other forms of media over many years. The opera truly must be seen as it was this composer’s intention. To read a comic book adaptation may seem like a bad idea, but in what I enjoyed in Roy Thomas version is that it helped reignite my interest in the Nordic sagas. The art by Gil Kane was inspiring. This work was published by DC Comics in the 90s; to find it now means chancing upon a collection while at a comic book show.

In 2012, Dark Horse Comics released their own version in 2012 with P. Craig Russell handling the chores of not only the writer but also the artist. This edition has its own gentile style and modestly introduces the sagas without being too extravagant in the presentation. It collects all the single issue covers and production notes (on how he turned the opera into an illustrative work) into a 450-page book! His pencil sketches are worth noting more than the finished work–and I’m only scratching the surface. Reading this work is just as enchanting. To compress it (which can clock in at 5 hours, or 15 to detail the entire four-part saga) to a 448-page work is just as impressive.

The live performance can be daunting for the newcomer. Not everyone is into opera. To read this work in illustrative form is a great way to become familiar with the story before tackling the stage show. No matter which version I’m looking at, I feel that when I’m done, there’s no need to watch Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings again, for a while. Both share the one ring ideology and borrow from similar sources, and that’s all there is.

Predator: The Essentials to release Dec 12 alongside The Predator Dec 18th!

4 Dec

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Dark Horse Comics has a new collection of Predators to unleash to an unsuspecting public. The trade paperback Predator: The Essential Comics vol 1 is set to release December 12th on Amazon.com and bookstores near you. This set of stories offers the essentials for fans to enjoy alongside the coming home video release of The Predator, December 18th! (click here to buy)

It is also perfect to sit alongside last month’s release of Aliens: The Essential Comics vol 1. Who knows, perhaps the third in the set will see the two deadliest species of the universe go face to face. The omnibus collections are getting harder to find since they are out of print.

“Concrete Jungle,” the first story should have been Predator 2, the movie. This tale by Mark Verheiden has a lot to enjoy, from establishing the fact Dutch Schaefer, from the movies, has a brother (his first name is never mentioned) to setting the fact these aliens have been visiting Earth for some time. The setting is New York City than Los Angeles, and for Schaefer, a cop, after an encounter with these hunters, he soon hears about what his brother has been up to. The connections to the movie seem slim, but it’s enough to at least give the Predator franchise a continuity.

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Let’s Celebrate Hellboy Day March 23, 2019 Courtesy of Dark Horse Comics!

18 Nov

Hot on the heels after the release of the entire Hellboy Omnibus collections, fans should rejoice! Next year, on Saturday, March 23, 2019, Dark Horse Comics will celebrate the 25th anniversary of legendary comic book creator Mike Mignola’s most famous creation with Hellboy Day.

Shortly after, fans can go enjoy the reboot of the film franchise on April 12, 2019.

In 1994, this company published Hellboy: Seed of Destruction and introduced comic book readers to the Right Hand of Doom, the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense, and one of the most iconic comic book characters—and universes—of all time. For 2019’s Hellboy Day celebration, Dark Horse will publish the 25th anniversary, promotional edition of Hellboy: Seed of Destruction issue 1, featuring a new cover by Mignola and colorist Dave Stewart, which will be given away at participating comic book shops; and select stores across the country will host Hellboy Day events.

“When I created Hellboy way back when I never imagined he would be around long enough to celebrate a 25th anniversary,” said Mike Mignola. “I’m grateful to the writers, artists, colorists and letterers who’ve joined me in telling Hellboy stories for all these years. And, of course, so grateful to the fans. This thing could not exist without their support and it’s a pleasure every time I get to go out to meet them.” Mike Mignola will appear at a Hellboy Day signing at Earth 2 Comics in Sherman Oaks in Los Angeles on March 23.

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