Monday, January 30, 2012

Comic Review: John Carter-A Princess of Mars #4-5

Still catching up on the comic reviews. Today we get a two for one deal.

As issue 4, "Flight!" opens, John Carter has just survived his time in the Thark arena when he is pitted against captured Heliumite Kantos Kan. However a clever ruse on Kantos' part allows both to escape unharmed and John continues his quest to find Dejah Thoris. Along the way he meets up again with Woola, discovers the Atmosphere Plant, finds out Dejah is now engaged, arrives in Zodanga, takes flying lessons from Kantos and promptly crashes into Dejah's room, and vows to put a stop to the wedding with some uninvited guests...

Which leads to issue 5, "Revolution!" where finds that Tars Tarkas has been busy-he stabbed Tal Hajus in the back and is now ruling the Tharks. At first reluctant to help, he agrees when he hears the Zodangans have his daughter Sola captive. And well you can guess the rest-John and company crash the wedding and rescue the bride. But a last minute complication results in John returning to Earth...and a young writer beginning his own incredible journey.

As anyone who read my previous reviews of the first three issues of this series knows, my reaction was "Meh." And it remains pretty much the same for these last two issues first. Again we get John Carter the pompous jerk narrating the whole story but also John Carter the idiot who manages to crash land into Dejah's bedroom with all of the skill of Inspector Clouseau. Admittedly most of the plot here is pretty faithful to Burroughs-the arena "fight" with Kantos Kan and the raid on Zodanga-and there is some interesting changes (like Than Kosis' getting the last laugh) but I didn't like the idea of Tars Tarkas just stabbing Tal Hajus in the back-it lacks the nobility of the character or the fact that it's only afterwards he discovers Sola is his daughter-which was the entire reason for his challenging Tal to start with.

And with the artwork-well I already said it before so I'll spare repeating myself.

In conclusion this series was a bust from start to finish. The writing, the artwork, everything just failed to catch fire. Maybe it was having just read Dynamite's treatment of the same story I just wasn't open to another version so close afterwards. I know some people liked this treatment of the story, I just didn't. Sorry folks. Final rating: 1 1/2 stars out of 4.

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