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  1. #1
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    Default PREVIEW: The Shadow #7

    NEW CREATIVE TEAM! NEW STORY ARC! The Shadow is known for the mystic power which allows him to cloud men's minds and read their hearts. But what happens when this power fails him? After the Shadow fails to stop a routine mugging, he travels to the Far East with his pilot and sidekick WWI ace Miles Crofton. In Nepal, he hopes to reconnect with his old masters and to consult with them about what could be amiss with his powers. Instead, he finds opium smugglers. As always, The Shadow faces danger... but he must also look within himself.


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  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by CBR News View Post
    NEW CREATIVE TEAM! NEW STORY ARC! The Shadow is known for the mystic power which allows him to cloud men's minds and read their hearts. But what happens when this power fails him? After the Shadow fails to stop a routine mugging, he travels to the Far East with his pilot and sidekick WWI ace Miles Crofton. In Nepal, he hopes to reconnect with his old masters and to consult with them about what could be amiss with his powers. Instead, he finds opium smugglers. As always, The Shadow faces danger... but he must also look within himself.
    Mystic power??? What mystic power? the Shadow has none?!?

    And at least they used an aide who did exist, tho I'm not very familiar with Crofton.

    Other aides:

    Harry Vincent, an operative whose life he saved when Vincent tried to commit suicide.
    Moses "Moe" Shrevnitz, aka "Shrevvy," a cab driver who doubles as his chauffeur.
    Margo Lane, a socialite created for the radio drama and later introduced into the pulps.
    Clyde Burke, a newspaper reporter.
    Burbank, a radio operator who maintains contact between The Shadow and his agents.
    Cliff Marsland, a wrongly convicted ex-con who infiltrates gangs using his crooked reputation.
    Dr. Rupert Sayre, The Shadow's personal physician.
    Jericho Druke, a giant, immensely strong black man.
    Slade Farrow, who works with The Shadow to rehabilitate criminals.
    Miles Crofton, who sometimes pilots The Shadow's autogyro.
    Rutledge Mann, a stock-broker who collects information.
    Claude Fellows, the only agent of The Shadow ever to be killed, which he was in Gangdom's Doom, 1931.
    Hawkeye, a reformed underworld snoop who trails gangsters and other criminals.
    Myra Reldon, a female operative who uses the alias of Ming Dwan when in Chinatown.
    Dr. Roy Tam, The Shadow's contact man in New York's Chinatown.

  3. #3
    Senior Member jsf's Avatar
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    The Shadow in the comics is a bit different than the one in the pulp. Rather than having him rely primarily upon his espionage experience from WWI, they have him utilizing some mystical abilities he picked up at some point in Asia.

    It's okay so long as you keep in mind the divergence from the source material and don't expect a completely faithful account in that regard.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jsf View Post
    The Shadow in the comics is a bit different than the one in the pulp. Rather than having him rely primarily upon his espionage experience from WWI, they have him utilizing some mystical abilities he picked up at some point in Asia.
    Uh, which "Shadow in the comics" do you mean?

    The Street & Smith version?
    The Archie version?
    The DC/Dark Horse/Marvel version?
    The later DC/Chaykin version?
    The even later DC/Shadow Strikes version?
    The Dynamite version?

    Some deviated fairly far from the pulp version. BUT, some did not. The Dennis O'Neill/Kaluta version was pretty close to the original. The Dynamite people decided to deviate for no good reason to had silly mystical stuff and ignore the rich number of characters (aides and villains of the original).

    It's okay so long as you keep in mind the divergence from the source material and don't expect a completely faithful account in that regard.
    True, but some of us would prefer a more faithful account. The original character is good enough.

  5. #5
    Junior Member Michael24's Avatar
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    Any word on how many issues this arc will run? I felt the first was about two issues too long.
    PULL LIST: Ghostbusters, John Carpenter's Asylum, Magnus: Robot Fighter, The Shadow, Star Wars, Thief of Thieves, Velvet, Wild Blue Yonder

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael24 View Post
    Any word on how many issues this arc will run? I felt the first was about two issues too long.
    No idea. I checked Pulp Coming Attractions (http://www.pulpcomingattractions.com/) to see if they knew, and didn't.

    I see that Dynamite is doing a "Shadow: Year One" series (assume a mini), but no info on how long that will run (5-6 issues I assume). Am a little leery of that if they aren't respective of the hints that Gibson dropped into the series (the Shadow's past as the aviator spy, Dark Eagle, his work for the Czar which is the source of his girasol ring, the fact that his real name is Kent Allard, etc), as well as tying in his aides that he built up over time.

  7. #7
    Senior Member jsf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by emb021 View Post
    Uh, which "Shadow in the comics" do you mean?.
    Uh, given the thread title, clearly the Dynamite version.

    More faithful account? Which one is that?

    The Walter Gibson version?

    The Theodore Tinsely version?

    The Bruce Elliott version?

    The Lester Dent version?

    The Dennis Lynds version?

    The "original" version was as open to interpretation as any other.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by jsf View Post
    Uh, given the thread title, clearly the Dynamite version.

    More faithful account? Which one is that?

    The Walter Gibson version?

    The Theodore Tinsely version?

    The Bruce Elliott version?

    The Lester Dent version?

    The Dennis Lynds version?

    The "original" version was as open to interpretation as any other.
    Not read that I know of the Lynds version, but the Gibson, Tinsely and Dent version are all clearly based on the same character and playing it straight. The differences are those of style not substance. Elliott strays the furthest from the mark, it's more of the Shadow solving crimes as Lamont Cranston. While not the same, it's still not really incompatible or contradictory with what went before. It's just different. That's more like comparing the 70's DC Shadow with Jones and Berretto's Shadow Strikes with Kaluta's Dark Horse Shadow. Or Batman by Novick, Aparo, Colan, Newton, Breyfogle. Depending on your tastes and predilections, one series may appeal to you more than the other, but they all feel like they are portraying the same character. With Dynamite, don't get that at all. Dynamite's is more like all the revamps we see in the majority of comics today: clearly based on a previous character but completely re-working it and creating a new character from the strip-mined parts.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsf View Post
    Uh, given the thread title, clearly the Dynamite version.

    More faithful account? Which one is that?

    The Walter Gibson version?

    The Theodore Tinsely version?

    The Bruce Elliott version?

    The Lester Dent version?

    The Dennis Lynds version?

    The "original" version was as open to interpretation as any other.
    Not really.

    You can't speak of a Gibson version, Tinsley version or Dent version. They were ALL the same version.

    Bruce Elliot didn't write about the Shadow, but about Lamont Cranston solving mysteries. Dennis Lynds did more of a spy version in the vein of the "Man From UNCLE" and the like.

    Most fans feel the original Gibson version is the proper version. The first DC/Marvel/DH version is based on this version, as is the Shadow Strikes version.

    Other comic versions were either off the mark (Chaykin and post Chaykin version) or WAY off the mark (Archie comics versions).

    I think Ed Love has it right. I would have preferred a version more like what we got from O'Neill & Kaluta (or the people who did Shadow Strikes) then what we are getting from Dynamite.

  10. #10
    Senior Member jsf's Avatar
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    I think it's disputable that they're all the "same" version. Each author tweaked the character to suit their own storytelling styles, and Lynd's in particular has stronger elements taken from the radio version that have been picked up by comic writers since then (re: the power to cloud men's minds). Like any fictional character, the thought that there is a canonic version of the character usually involves pointing to one version (or one author's version) that the reader finds most sympathetic and discounting all others. If that's the case, then I would suppose you guys find the radio version of the character as objectionable as any, given the departure of that version from the pulp in so many ways. And I would find that hard to believe (since you both seem to be sincere fans of the character).

    Look, I can understand the complaint that this isn't the version of the Shadow that you think best resembles the version from the pulp novels. I also disagree with such a view if that's used as a reason for not allowing one's self to enjoy this iteration of the character. I like seeing the character again, and can personally live with the shades of Eastern mysticism they've incorporated into the stories. His having the ability to literally cloud men's mind (or speak to spirits) is a heckuva lot better than having him run around with a cyborg body or be updated into being a handsomely dashing figure with uzis.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael24 View Post
    Any word on how many issues this arc will run? I felt the first was about two issues too long.
    Got #7, and its a 'done in one' storyline.

    #8 starts a 4 issue storyline.

  12. #12
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    I am not liking Gischler's The Shadow. He seems like just another superhero now. I liked Ennis's glib and stern Shadow much better. He might as well be Bruce Wayne now.
    "You know the weed of crime bears bitter fruit. Bears pus and poison. Taints the world, makes God a lie." - Garth Ennis' The Shadow

  13. #13
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    Yes, it's a done in one. And a very good one at that. We learn some things about The Shadow's past and teachers, and we learn that he just doesn't do helpless.

    I have no problem at all that this version of the Shadow, (or The Spider for that matter), may not hew to the letter of the original. It's GOOD, and that's what matters to me. Both the Ennis opening arc, and this issue were great. Only the Annual has lacked so far.

    I give it an 8/10. Not quite the levels of perfection of the closing issue of Ennis' arc, but still very good. If Valiant is hitting it out of the park, so is Dynamite with it's pulp heroes line-up.
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  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by gwydion View Post
    Yes, it's a done in one. And a very good one at that. We learn some things about The Shadow's past and teachers, and we learn that he just doesn't do helpless.

    I have no problem at all that this version of the Shadow, (or The Spider for that matter), may not hew to the letter of the original. It's GOOD, and that's what matters to me. Both the Ennis opening arc, and this issue were great. Only the Annual has lacked so far.

    I give it an 8/10. Not quite the levels of perfection of the closing issue of Ennis' arc, but still very good. If Valiant is hitting it out of the park, so is Dynamite with it's pulp heroes line-up.
    Not that it doesn't "hew to the letter", it's that neither even tries to be accurate to the characters or come reasonably close. Thus, while the structures may be sound and good, they're still built on faulty foundations of sand. I'm not a purist. Doesn't bother me if all the aides are there or that they play up Margo Lane more than they did in the pulps. Doesn't bother me that the Spider is wearing a costume from the serials than the pulps. That's one that I can simply chalk up to the differences in the medium. What bothers me are the fundamental changes to the characters, their relationships and motivations. No matter how good the rest is, if the characters don't ring true, the rest is already fundamentally flawed. Even then, I might give a pass if I thought the end result was more fun. These two characters might be two of the hardest to write. But, focusing on more graphic depictions of violence, making the character more of a cold-hearted bastard... those are at odds to what I find to be the basic spirit of the character.

    Let's face it, it doesn't take any great talent to write a character off-model. Anyone can do that. Most of the comics on the stands today are testament to that. DC's whole initiative is built on it. It takes more talent for a writer to subjugate his ego and write something that is both true to the characters and to the best of his ability without turning it into a pastiche.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by jsf View Post
    I think it's disputable that they're all the "same" version. Each author tweaked the character to suit their own storytelling styles, and Lynd's in particular has stronger elements taken from the radio version that have been picked up by comic writers since then (re: the power to cloud men's minds). Like any fictional character, the thought that there is a canonic version of the character usually involves pointing to one version (or one author's version) that the reader finds most sympathetic and discounting all others. If that's the case, then I would suppose you guys find the radio version of the character as objectionable as any, given the departure of that version from the pulp in so many ways. And I would find that hard to believe (since you both seem to be sincere fans of the character).

    Look, I can understand the complaint that this isn't the version of the Shadow that you think best resembles the version from the pulp novels. I also disagree with such a view if that's used as a reason for not allowing one's self to enjoy this iteration of the character. I like seeing the character again, and can personally live with the shades of Eastern mysticism they've incorporated into the stories. His having the ability to literally cloud men's mind (or speak to spirits) is a heckuva lot better than having him run around with a cyborg body or be updated into being a handsomely dashing figure with uzis.
    It's disputable in that you are disputing it, but I still say you're wrong. The writers with the exception of Lynd in those instances were trying to write the same character as Gibson set forth within much of the same parameters. The differences are those mainly in personal style and story types with some errors that are bound to crop up. It's a far cry from a writer accidentally getting something wrong to intentionally getting something wrong. And, you'll find that fans generally like Tinsley's Shadow more than Elliott's because it is closer in spirit to the source. But, you read Dent's story and Tinsley's stories and compare them with Gibson's, you don't really see the Shadow as being fundamentally different characters. Ennis' version is not a tweaking. It's taking liberties and making changes to the character. More importantly in my book, it's making changes that make the character less heroic, more unlikeable and thus less fun and less interesting to want to read about.

    And, reading the letters of the pulps, you'll find that they were divided as well as to the Radio vs Pulp Shadow with quite a bit of dislike of seeing Margo brought into the pulp series.

    As far as me liking the radio show and I do to an extent. But, I can offer these reasons:
    1) I am human and thus a hypocrite. There are many things I like that I shouldn't. There are things I like that commit the same errors of things I don't like. I like Sherlock Holmes. I hold the Granada series with Jeremy Brett as the gold standard. I like the Rathbone version. I like the Young Sherlock Holmes movie and Sherlock. Elementary I find ok as long as I ignore the Sherlock Holmes aspects. Yet, I strongly dislike the Downey Jr. movies. But, a big part of that is it doesn't feel like it's even trying for any kind of accuracy. It's negatives outweigh the few positives. And, being more accurate to the character and canon, cannot salvage the horrible Rupert Everett version. So, fidelity is not the only standard. The ultimate hypocrisy is I like the Shadow movie. More now than I did when it first came out. Some of that is context of the times, as well as having read the pulp that quite a bit of the movie is taken from. It's not the movie I would have wanted to see or really want to see, but at the end of the day, it is a fun movie that remembers the superhero aspect of the character's concept and nature and I watch it about once a year. I just consider it as the "origin" movie to the radio series (just as I look at Young Sherlock Holmes is the origin story to the Rathbone and Bruce Sherlock Holmes movies). The Victor Jory serial is an even odder mash-up. It seems to have radio's Lamont Cranston and Margo Lane, but the pulp's Shadow. Still quite a bit of fun to watch.

    2) I am more forgiving of older versions. The further removed from the present, the more forgiving I can be of the excesses. For instance, I enjoy many of the superhero serials, even with the liberties they take. I am more forgiving of the Captain America serial than I am of the current Captain America movie. Part of that is distance, they have become artifacts and thus are easier to view more in historical context than as being linked to the source material. What I expect and want from them are different. Plus, their existence has less to do with direction of the property forward. There's tons of Shadow stories since they came out that I have access to. However, a current direction and its reception is going to have an effect on new product coming out. If this version does well, I'm less likely to get Shadow or Spider comics I do like. So, yes, I am going to be far more critical of its fidelity than something that is over six decades old.

    3) It's important to remember that the Radio series is in many ways concurrent to the pulp. The Shadow was first a radio host before a pulp character. Because of the differences in media and formats, the radio show was NEVER going to be similar to the pulp. While there was some crossover between the two in names, characters and even a few basic plots, the two were so different as to be two entirely different characters. But, because they were so concurrent, both immensely popular and owing their existence to each other, the radio series is no less valid. Sort of like the nu52 Green Arrow and the series ARROW. Though concurrent series inextricably linked by their source, they are completely different animals. Ignoring continuity, which would you really say is the more valid Green Arrow? When I look at the fidelity of ARROW, it's not against the new comic, but against the older versions. Thus my enjoyment of one is not fueled by my enjoyment of the other.

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