This weekend’s must read digital comics in the Sunday Digest include Dark Horse’s re-imagining of Star Wars based on George Lucas’ original screenplay and a powerful prison drama from Thrillbent with The Damnation of Charlie Wormwood.
The Star Wars #1 (Dark Horse Comics)
On the surface this may seem like another exploitation of the die-hard Star Wars fan – a comic based on the original rough script of a story that would become Star Wars and features under-developed ideas of our favourite characters. But in actual fact it ends up being a really refreshing read and a much more rewarding tie-in than you might expect. Taking familiar characters and giving them new back stories like Luke Skywalker who is an ageing Jedi General and Annikin Starkiller the vengeful young knight, gives the whole Star Wars universe an intriuging re-imagining and reboot in a way that we would never see otherwise. Sure the dialogue is as hokey as always, but that’s the original script’s fault, not writer JW Rinzler’s, and isn’t that part of the charm? The artwork from Mike Mayhew does a brilliant job referencing existing Star Wars characters and technology but the real gem is the cover from Jan Duursema which does a brilliant job of updating the original poster for these new characters. This is a fantastic look at what might have been for the world’s biggest sci-fi franchise and a must-read for anyone with even a passing interest in Star Wars.
The Star Wars #1 is available via Dark Horse Digital for £2.49/$2.99
The Damnation of Charlie Wormwood (Thrillbent)
Like Top Shelf ComiX’s The Walk, Thrillbent‘s The Damnation of Charlie Wormwood is a brilliant reminder that comics don’t need to be packed full of explosions, superheros or aliens to be powerful and engaging. Based on true stories from their time as prison teachers writers Christina Blanch and Chris Carr have created a truly engaging storyline as the eponymous Charlie deals with the financial repurcusions of his son’s terminal illness and attempts to resist the all too tempting offer of help from one of his prisoners. Emotionally challenging without ever being overly sentimental, Blanch and Carr’s superb script is turned into a such an absording read by artist Chee’s simple and stylish monochrome washes. Using the Thrillbent‘s Guided View expertise to brilliantly subtle effect it takes the reader on a journey into the complex world of Wormwood without ever feeling overblown and gimmicky. Another gem from Mark Waid’s digital comics stable.
The Damnation of Charlie Wormwood #1 is available via ComiXology for free with issue #2 costing £0.69/$0.99. And for more visit www.thrillbent.com
The Psychedelic Journal of Time Travel
Another fantastic title that we discovered courtesy of the Melksham Comic Con. This self-published collection of time travel inspired indie books is a real sensory overload, featuring 14 fantastic short stories, all of which feature some element of time travel. Told in a variety of genres from straight sci-fi to medieval to modern day, the stories are limited to only a few pages and each have a cliffhanger ending which means the stories are kept short and sweet, getting to the point and then getting out before they overstay their welcome. It’s like flicking through TV channels and watching just enough to get the point before moving on. It’s a really great way to enjoy these stories and feels like something really unique. Whether it can be sustained over multiple issues, or if this will even be the same for issue 2, we will have to wait and see. But for this first issue it makes for a really original and exciting way to tell stories in a variety of genres.
The Psychedelic Journal of Time Travel is available via Comicsy for £5.00