March 25, 2007

Review of LONE RANGER #1

I finally read issues #1-2 of the new LONE RANGER series. Unfortunately, reading them wasn’t much different from skimming them at my local dealer’s. I’ve rarely read such “lite” comics. The creators could’ve told these stories in half the pages.

Here’s what one reviewer had to say about LONE RANGER #1. I concur with his views completely.

The premise of this version of the Lone Ranger:Dynamite Entertainment brings him barreling out of the cultural cobwebs with a grittier, Eastwood and Deadwood inspired re-imagining, placing the usually kitschy character in a west that’s wild due to more historically accurate, sincere dangers, such as the gang of vicious, mercilessly violent law-dodgers as appear in the inaugural issue.The writing:The action of the comic is fast and remarkably violent, the slower scenes sodden with atmospheric heft and relentlessly rising momentum. The downside of such an aesthetic, though, is that the book lacks even one single ounce of subtlety.The artwork:On the other side of the creative coin, artist Sergio Cariello (of Deathstroke and Azrael fame) comes out with (sorry for this) both guns blazing, illustrating like the rising Big Two star he should be. His art is as much Adam as it is Joe Kubert, and the combination makes for a spectacularly visceral blend of the beauteously classic and the grippingly modern. Under his pencil and pen, the western landscape is barren, arid, a true wasteland, and its human inhabitants little more than speech-equipped cavemen, barbarous and tribal, yet still for all of that human and recognizable.The pacing:The entire issue is, at best, a five minute read, though most will probably be hard pressed to break the three-minute mark. Worst of all, when the reader reaches the end and realizes that it is the end, an inescapable feeling of having been cheated out of three dollars for little more than a brief sneak-peek of an epic story is adamantly heartfelt.Conclusion:[W]hile the ride appears to be a viscerally thrilling one it also looks to be a pricey, unnecessarily protracted one, too. There is not, despite popular opinion, only one thing the retelling of a classic icon needs; beyond a contemporary style of action and conflict, it also requires a modern, more elevated use of narrative and naturalistic, effective character interaction, two things that this particular series lacks even an inkling of. Though for those who only wish for cheap thrills and a story that won’t eat up more than a single television commercial-break’s worth of time, then The Lone Ranger is for you!

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