Wednesday, January 7, 2015

You Look Mahvelous!

David Liss & Colton Worely “The Shadow Now” (Dynamite, 2015)

I’m going to assume that you know some general things about the Shadow.  Pulp character, maybe the first “dark knight”, knows what evil lurks, etc etc…

The twist on this run is that it’s a setup to tell stories with the Shadow in modern times.  As the story opens he’s recently returned from the far east (where he’s gone for some mystical spa – he’s now a young man).  His organization is betrayed & he loses everything…

Basically this is a big soft reboot on the whole Shadow universe.  The story brings him into the modern era & sets him up for future stories.  There’s quite a bit of play with the “man out of time” motif, but without the humor that you may be used to seeing in that trope.

Worely’s art tends towards the realist look that is often used in Dynamite’s books.  I like it, although at times the dark palettes and heavy use of shadows made some details get lost.

On the whole I’m not sure that this reboot really works.  Like so many pulp characters, the Shadow has some problematic elements that are embedded deeply.  These elements need to be addressed, particularly if he’s going to be operating in the modern world. 

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