Tag Archives: Evan Dorkin

How to Bridge a Peace in Beasts of Burden: Occupied Territory #3

4 Jun

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Dark Horse Comics
Available Now

Spoiler Alert

The many yokai that Emerys has to face in Beasts of Burden: Occupied Territory shows that not even the weight of the world can stop him in his obligation to keep the humans safe. I’ve skipped looking at an issue because there’s still a lot to address in this mini-series and I knew #3 will focus on more than the rising action. This latest tale by Evan Dorkin and Sarah Dyer nicely introduces readers to the supernatural side of Japan. Benjamin Dewey’s style remains beautifully solid, and this latest shows he can bring a tear to this reader’s eye.

The first issue was merely a tease, the second dealt with tanukis and witches, the third goes deep with Kappas, Kitsune, Yamawaros and many more. This release may well be the Mononoke Hime of the franchise, as it deals with some overarching themes from the Ghibli anime in a subtler context.

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The Beasts of Burden: Occupied Territory Lives In the World of the Yuurei

9 Apr

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Dark Horse Comics
Available Now

Spoiler Alert

The Beasts of Burden are back! Emrys, the old English sheepdog with a nose for smelling out the supernatural, is in Japan and this work looks like a solo adventure. Technically, it’s happened already, and he’s recounting the events in flashback.

After many mini-series and one-shots, the wait for another tale to materialize was not long. Evan Dorkin and Sarah Dyer share writing duties. Anyone who isn’t familiar with this canine team of paranormal investigators, three hardcovers editions–Neighbourhood Watch, Wise Dogs & Eldritch Men, and Animal Rites (Amazon Links)–collects their past adventures. No background reading is required to pick up in this latest story, titled Occupied Territory.

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Let’s Face It, Bill & Ted Are Doomed

8 Sep

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Release Date:
September 9, 2020

Dark Horse Comics
SPOILER ALERT

The release of the comic book Bill & Ted Are Doomed is far too perfect of a title for those who know the premise behind the movie Face the Music. It’s a proper sequel to Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey. The new misadventures they have nicely fills in the gap to the years leading up to the third film. The tale looks at the decline of the Wyld Stallyns.

Life is not as easy with an enormous weight on their shoulders. They married their respective princesses, and Billie and Thea are born. I would have liked a story which develops how these kids were raised. The toddlers want to have fun and to see how they were raised doesn’t always make for entertaining reading. As much as I would’ve like to see it, the focus is really on Bill and Ted in this work.

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Beasts of Burden: Wise Dogs & Eldritch Men, A Review

14 Aug

By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)
Due to hit shelves August 22, 2018

Beasts of Burden is one of Dark Horse Comics‘ sweet gems which is very playful in its artistic depictions of the heroes, and cunning with the types of supernatural tales weaved. I became aware of this work by writer Evan Dorkin and artist Jill Thompson when I purchased the anthology collection, Dark Horse’s Book of Hauntings. Here, cats and dogs work together to deal with paranormal threats. Usually, the humans are nowhere to be seen. As they go about their daily life, a dangerous undercurrent takes place. In Burden Hill, these adorable animals are protectors of humanity from the evil that’s afoot.

The latest work teams Dorkin with Benjamin Dewey. Wise Dogs and Eldritch Men sees a different team at work. Canines are investigating why a fire salamander was captured. As innocent as this elemental is, the carnage resulting from him trying to escape his capture has Emrys, a Tibetan Terrier (the leader of the pack) investigate. This tale has all the hallmarks of a terrific detective novel. If the goblins one of these lads accidentally unleashed are any indication, perhaps trolls are next?

As the title implies, human wizards are using the forests around the Pocono Mountains to ferret out supernatural creatures. They manage to capture one, and when Emrys realizes what is going on, the team definitely has to prevent the evil from establishing a foothold in them thar hills. Just how this tale will unfold will take four comics to tell, and I am hooked with issue one, due out in shelves August 22nd.

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Dark Horse Comics’ Beasts of Burden: Animal Rites Lands on May 9th!

9 May

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

If Evan Dorkin and Jill Thompson‘s Beasts of Burden ever finally becomes a movie, I will be there opening night. This writer and artist team crafted a wonderful world where animals, not people, investigate the supernatural! The reasoning is very sound; animals have senses humans do not to perceive paranormal goings-on. This treatment should have materialized by now; news broke back in 2013 and has since been in development hell.

In the interim, Dark Horse Comics release of new works is equally sporadic, mostly due to the team having busy independent schedules. This team first appeared in The Dark Horse Book of Hauntings (2003), and it has accumulated to Animal Rites (Amazon Link), to be reprinted as a trade paperback on May 9th, 2018 — a perfect jumping in point for newcomers — and Wise Dogs and Eldritch Men, all-new tales on August 22, 2018.

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