Witches can be cute, especially if they happen to be on television in the ‘90s. Zenescope Entertainment brings the Charmed television series to comics, and we take a look behind the cover.
Previously on Charmed: To be honest, I barely watched past the first season of the television show when it became clear that Shannen Doherty wasn’t going to make it past the third season. In a nutshell, the Power of Three allows the Halliwell sisters to do all sorts of magicy things ultimately going against the Source of All Evil. As the series came to a close, the sisters settle down, have kids, and lead a life of happily ever after.
AFTER THE HAPPILY EVER AFTER
While the demons of the world may be hiding, there are those that are attempting to make contact with the underworld to either A) give themselves more power or B) unleash the ultimate source of evil to take the Halliwells down a couple of pegs. In either case, by issue’s end, the evil duo do find themselves at the gates of heck waiting to meet the big bad.
As far as what is going on with the sisters, one is the teacher at a school of magic. It’s not quite Hogwarts, but the same feeling is there (minus the sorting hat, huge castle, and children running around in school robes). The other two sisters spend the issue dealing with their children who have begun to manifest their powers. One has the power to teleport, and when her mother leaves for work, she instantly teleports her back. The other thinks it is funny to have a plant attack her mother. There is a lot of sad trumpet humor throughout the issue that seems to be on par with the powers gone askew from the television series.
Not a lot goes on, as this is pure setup, but there are a few issues that may prevent new readers from picking up and enjoying the issue. The biggest is not knowing who anyone is. Only one of the main characters is addressed by name, and if the reader doesn’t know who anyone is, that is going to lead to problems. This review is based upon an advanced copy sent by the company, and it didn’t have an inside cover attached, so I don’t know if there is a Previously In… segment or not. If not, a summary of what has gone on before would be very valuable – not everyone is going to take the time to visit Wikipedia.
That being said, fans of the television series are more than likely going to be interested in reading the further adventures of their favorite characters – that is if Zenescope can get their attention and make the aware that the book is out there.
I’ve been a Dave Hoover fan for a long time, and seeing his work in the page instead of only on the cover is nice. Hoover’s females are always drawn cute and/or sexy and when you are taking the Halliwell sisters and putting them on the page, you’re going to want an artist who can do them justice. I don’t know if Zenescope was able to get the likeness rights to the performers from the series or not, as there is only a vague passing resemblance in the characters on the page.
I don’t really care for the coloring in this book. It looks like shadows and highlights were added here and there, and the shading just doesn’t feel right on the page. Some areas look well rendered, while other areas look flat or lit completely wrong.
BOTTOM LINE: ONLY IF YOU ARE A FAN
Like Buffy the Vampire Slayer before it, the biggest hurdle is going to be in attracting new readers. There are just so many barriers that aren’t explained, that new readers are probably not going to continue. If Zenescope can publicize and advertise the book in the right spots, it might be able get the attention of fans and give them something that continues those adventures. If you are a fan, you’ll probably get a kick out of revisiting old friends, and the first issue does a fine job at that. First timers not familiar with the subject are probably going to give this a pass. It’s a middle of the road issue for me, earning 2.5 out of 5 Stars. Not too bad, but not out of this world.