Oracle Towers Review #8:
Story: Val Staple
Pencil: Emiliano Santalucia w/ Enza Fontana
Colour: Val Staples, Mark Sweeny, and Kevin Senft w/ Shaynne Corbett
Letters: Dreamer Designs
Edits: Heather Schneider, Jeremy Padawer, Ian Richter, Geoff Walker, Ricardo Crespo
Back again for a nice overcast day in the canada's but who the hell cares were talking about comics. those of you last monday who read my review on the previous issue ( Oracle towers review #6). after spending the weekend going on and off with this issue, trying to nit pick what i see and laugh at it just for the hell of it. im finally ready to make my review on this issue which im payed to do.....okay not payed. no need to get technical. So lets delve into the world of Eternia yet again to find more on the Dark Reflections Saga.
The Story So we left off on a cliffhanger with the masters and the ...crushing defeat they suffered in that previous issue. this story starts off with Evil Lyn and Tri klops who were not with skeletor when he made his encounter with the Masters. not much is given on what skeletors plot is, but from what we see of the device that Tri-klops is working on suggest it could be a gate. If seen enough episodes of Stargate series to know an artificial wormhole generator when i see one.
Evil Lyn in this part goes on to thinking how gran and glorious her powers are much better than the sorceress, who we just learned that she stopped trying to contact he-man. one thing i love that they keep conisistant about Evil Lyn is her attitude and how she always hints at back stabbing anyone who is higher than her. While Tri-klops always displays unwavering loyalty to skeletor tries to remind Evil lyn of her position with in Skeletors ranks. one thing i love from this story so far is good character interaction.
This type of character interaction carries on through most of the story even when skeletor arrives. Though i have a bad habit of doing it when spoiling this story but this part of the story when beastman screws up is a great example of the leadership and character of Skeletor. punishment for stupidity is a must, I tell that to you would be dictators out there or aspiring super villians. outside of the screw up, everything is according to plan and skeletor can not help but take in a good short lived laugh of success.
The Masters arrive on the scene with one or two still living red shirts, that is short lived. as skeletor always finds some way to kill those red shirt characters so easily. from this point there is quite a bit of action in this issue. Though i do not mind the action at all. I find this type of action is necessary for this issue. which makes it better that most of the characters are already injured but still keep fighting. Man at arms goes on to be like jackie chan and keep saying "bad day bad day!" my beef is with what he says when after fighting beastman. beastman collapses before the battle starts and Man-at-arms says" I guess this day isn't all bad after all." its like he forgot that a few red shirts a dead, skeletor got away from them the first time, and oh yeah castle grayskull is under siege, but all in all with beastman falling over its not a bad day.
This turns into the climactic point of the issue when Man-at -arms attempts to break the machine or redirect it someplace else. but skeletor gets wind of this and blasts man-at-arms and the gateway which then activates an suddenly Man at arms dissapears. Skeletor and his minions flee from the scene and promises retribution for getting in his way of his plans. a distraught he-man,ram man and teela look on the ruins of the gateway and mourn the loss of a great warrior.
In this issue i found there was great character interaction, and more focus on making skeletor on what he was a evil overlord. there was quite a bit of action which kept you going from beginning to end. we see more of the type of power Skeletor wields on some of his minions. but at the same time in this story there was some lack of common sense when it came to man at arms and why he just would not bash the console or just wreck the machine with his mace. and i thought it was strange that Man-at-arms was gone in the second issue, since there is 6 i would imagine he comes back. so all in all story gets a 3.9 / 5 still a good story that maybe lacking in some common sense.
The Pretty Colours
Emiliano with the help of Enza fontana did a great job with the art in this issue. lots of detail to castle grayskull which i always love. but i think this team worked well in balancing the main issue which i always had before. which i ranted on in the previous volume of the series. Where more detail was spend on characters because of the impending action that would take place.
This was not the issue this time... ha issue. but instead we get great fights in each panel after the initial contact with the masters again in this comic. He-man and Ram man did something similar to the Fastball special, which some people who read X-men are familiar with when the heavy member of the group tosses one of the lighter ones into the air to cause a huge amount of damage. this is more so popular with Colossus and Wolverine. now this one will have to be trade marked as the Fast-Cannon Special. in two shots we see ram man run towards he-man who has his hands down ready to alley oop. next scene ram man was tossed into a giant rock monster and makes it explode.
Outside of that, not much else can really be said for the art which i have not touched base on in the previous review. The pencil art is great and very well detailed on characters and equipment. they show a lot of care for the actions and the poise each character carries with them. the colouring adds to the scenes, but much like what i said before. it seems quite bright in the background. but over all i give a 4 /5 for the art. its great and it keeps well with the story.
After reading this issue i find my only problem with this is that there was a bit of common sense issues with some of the characters. where as man at arms could have helped the others or even just bashed the machine to keep it from working. I don't know about you guys but i find a cup of water into a plugged in easy bake oven works enough for me to destroy machines, and the circuit breaker.
The art flowed really well and there was nothing there that made me think i missed out on anything important. but what the art does really well in, is that it makes you focus on the character in that panel. and when you re-read the issue again you find something new that you did not notice before. which makes it great for picking up. the art i feel really helped carry an action based issue such as this.
Over all its a 4 out of 5. The art and story were about the same. Image does a good job at trying to revive what was a syndicated show from the 80's. though the ending of this i did not care for as it was early it has a more predictable feel on how it would turn out in the end. For fans of the series i would pick this up. for non fans i would suggest picking up the first issue of this volume to find out how you would enjoy this. For X-men fans who love character development and action this would be a good read for you as it would give you a fill of both.
This is issue #2 now done, next time im back ill be reviewing Issue #3 next monday. but till then you have to wait till me next issue this thursday. so have a great day and remember to bag and board your comics. keep the memories lasting longer with bags and boards.