Screen Junkies » comic books http://www.screenjunkies.com Movie Reviews & TV Show Reviews Wed, 03 Dec 2014 00:20:56 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.3.1 The Walking Dead: Which Did it Better, The Comic or the TV Show? http://www.screenjunkies.com/general/the-walking-dead-which-did-it-better-the-comic-or-the-tv-show/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/general/the-walking-dead-which-did-it-better-the-comic-or-the-tv-show/#comments Tue, 02 Sep 2014 19:32:02 +0000 DustinSeibert http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264604 The comic book is awesome. The show is awesome. But which is better? We take a look at seven major differences between them and break it down for all you zombie lovers. [Warning: Spoilers ahead!]

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The Walking Dead is justifiably one of basic cable’s most popular shows ever, and the most successful show in AMC’s history by a wide margin. It wasn’t until the success of the show that the ongoing Image Comics book on which it’s based caught fire as well.

The fantastic black-and-white title’s first issue predates the show’s first episode by four years, and the show follows the narrative of the book — albeit loosely at times. If you’re a stalwart fan of the show, which returns to the screen for Season 5 on October 12th, there’s very little excuse not to catch up with the 132 issues (at press time) of the book, which which can be easily consumed via tomes; for those of you Game of Thrones fans who don’t like to actually read, The Walking Dead has pictures!

In my opinion, the book is generally superior to the show, as is often the case with literature translated to screen. It explores the zombie apocalypse with a hard-R approach inaccessible to basic cable, so writer/creator Robert Kirkman (who also executive produces the show) has far more leeway and less meddling opinions to impede him from doing what he pleases.

Though there are numerous things big and small that the book did better with the same narrative, several of the show’s deviations — including characters and story lines — have been rock-solid and serve to make up for some aspects of the book that could never make it to the show for various reasons (e.g. the too-heinous-for-television death of Lori and her baby; the fact that Rick lost his right hand to the Governor years ago).

Here, we compare the show with the book to see which does better in what department. WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD…



1.
The Governor vs. Michonne: Sure, David Morrissey’s Governor has some rape-y vibes, evident in how he dealt with Maggie after her capture in season 3. But the comic’s Governor, a mixture of a young Danny Trejo and Nick Fury, is a flat-out sadistic rapist. He captures Michonne, ties her up by her arms, tears off her clothes, beats her, and…well, you know the rest. Michonne later metes out her revenge, I Spit On Your Grave-style, taking way more than just the eye she took on the show. The whole thing is too much for basic cable, and even sensitive readers might have to turn away from it.

Winner: Book

 

2. Andrea: Andrea’s treatment in the show is likely the most annoying deviation from the book. Laurie Holden did just fine by the character, but her arc was ridiculous. Shacking up with the Governor and being taken in by his deception, leading to her own demise? F*** outta here, son. The book’s Andrea is a still-living badass with a scar on her face whose sniper skills are the reason a bunch of characters are still alive. As Rick’s right-hand partner inside and outside of the bedroom, the two serve as the guardians of the flock in the comic, living by the mantra “We don’t die.” For incontrovertible proof of how much more awesome comic Andrea is than show Andrea, look no further than issue 113, in which she engages in a fist-knife fight with one of Negan’s cronies and comes out on top.

WINNER: Book

3. “Days Gone Bye”: The pilot episode and the book’s first collection are likely closer in narrative than at any other point. They also remain one of the very best story lines of both. Rick waking up in the hospital, encountering the cafeteria full of zombies and stumbling out into a world that’s very different than before he was shot in the line of duty will likely remain one of the best zombie apocalypse intro stories. Frank Darabont, the man behind the greatest movie of all time, The Shawshank Redemption, directed that first episode with a beautifully haunting quietude; Rick’s encounter with Morgan and his son, his eventual ride into downtown Atlanta and the spectacular, nail-biting pilot-ending encounter with an unmanageable sea of city walkers established the show instant must-watch television. The book’s story arc is concurrent with Season 1′s successive episodes, including the death of Andrea’s sister Amy and the Shane-Rick-Lori triangle. The book arc, however, ended with Shane’s death at the hands of Carl, which happened much later and a bit cooler — on the show.

WINNER: Tie

4. Carl: For reasons I have been unable to properly comprehend (which means they probably aren’t that good), people have big problems with Lori on the show. But Carl is my least favorite character on the show by miles. All pre-pubescent, adolescent boys are obnoxious by nature, but Carl kinda takes it to the next level. The Season 4 episode “After,” in which he castigated his unconscious, ailing dad and wished for his death before sneaking off and running through bullets like they were rice in China made me want to dunk him in that tub of chocolate pudding, seal the top and ship him off to Abu Dhabi. He’s more centered and humble in the book, which might have something to do with the fact that he got half his head blown off and is missing an eye.

WINNER: Book

5. Daryl Dixon: The show’s shining beacon, Norman Reedus‘ Daryl Dixon doesn’t exist at all in the comic, and is perhaps the best deviation from the book. Daryl went from being a morally muddy racist to the show’s dark hero, winning the hearts and loins of women everywhere while maintaining his cool factor for the rest of us. One of my favorite scenes to date is Season 3′s reunion with and forced showdown between Daryl and his more polarizing (and even more racist) older brother Merle. Problem is, Daryl’s so beloved that the show runners are sort of locked into him; to off him would be to court fan ire. I would love to see the powers that be not go out like a bunch of scared chumps (a la The Sopranos) and kill off Daryl regardless of the fans. That alone would give the show legendary status.

WINNER: Show

6. Willingness to Off Little Girls: The comic, much like the show, is beloved for its shameless disregard for the lives of its main characters (many of the stars still alive in the show, for example, are long perished in the book). But the way the show relishes in knocking off small children is really f&$@ing awesome. The show arguably hit its stride when, after everyone spent the first half of season 2 searching for Carol’s daughter Sophia, she came hobbling out of the barn full of zombies as an undead herself, only to be put down by Rick. But the show’s most speechless moment came in season 4, when a battle-hardened Carol — unencumbered by that petty empathy that gets people killed in the zombie apocalypse — laid Lizzie down like the broken dog she was (a result of Lizzie killing her young sister Mika). “The Grove” remains one of the most controversial episodes of the series, and the last truly great one as of this writing. It’s the best reminder of the harrowing, unflinching world in which the characters exist.

WINNER: Show

7. Negan’s Reign of Terror: Though sadistic overlord Negan will allegedly show his face in the upcoming season 5 (Ed. Note – Don’t click the previous link if you don’t want a big book spoiler and potential show spoiler!), I’m going to preemptively state, sight unseen, that there’s no way he can be better on the show than the comic. The best part of Negan is the freewheeling insouciance Kirkman applies to the character’s, ahem, “colorful” language. (Perhaps no comic character has so gleefully utilized the F-bomb in every other word). I’ve been a comic reader since I was a sprout in the mid-1980s, and I’ve never encountered an easier-to-hate character so ripe for the fall. I think the show ultimately dropped the ball with the Governor, so I’m not expecting a lot from a character who basic cable simply cannot contain.

PREEMPTIVE WINNER: Book

Buy ‘The Walking Dead Compendium One and Two’ on Amazon to catch up on the first 96 issues.

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http://www.screenjunkies.com/general/the-walking-dead-which-did-it-better-the-comic-or-the-tv-show/feed/ 0 michonne-and-the-gov3-666×1024-cropped Andrea_the_walking_dead_comic daysgonebye Carl’s Eye Daryl-Dixon-image-daryl-dixon-36706158-1600-1120 LizzieTWD negan the walking dead
Gallery: Rating the Big-Screen Counterparts of Comic Book Characters http://www.screenjunkies.com/gallery/rating-the-big-screen-counterparts-of-comic-book-characters/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/gallery/rating-the-big-screen-counterparts-of-comic-book-characters/#comments Mon, 04 Aug 2014 16:50:50 +0000 DustinSeibert http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=gallery&p=263690 Casting Zoe Saldana as hulking green badass Gamora in 'Guardians of the Galaxy' wasn't the most logical choice, to say the least. So which actors and actresses came closer to their comic book counterparts?

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It’s inherently difficult to get flesh-and-blood women to replicate the impossibly buxom and Amazonian character models of our favorite comic book characters. It can be done (see: Wrestler-turned-porn-chick Chyna as She-Hulk in the X-rated Avengers parody), but some filmmakers aren’t even trying that hard.

Take Zoe Saldana, who plays Gamora in Marvel’s new Guardians of the Galaxy flick. Saldana is a certified hottie whose star is burning bright right now, but the problem with the casting is Gamora is often drawn as a 6-foot-plus green badass who could break your soul with her thighs, and Zoe is a 5-foot-7 waif who’s always in desperate need of a cheeseburger.

It’s the same issue with Israeli actress Gal Gadot, who will play Wonder Woman in the upcoming Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice film. Princess Diana’s always had an imposing frame that put her on par — or ahead of — her male superhero counterparts. Gadot, though, looks like she’s never done a bicep curl in her life, which hasn’t been lost on Wonder Woman fans.

You can’t please everyone when it comes to casting iconic characters. But when it’s done right, few people will complain. Here, we examine some comic adaptation castings that were right on the money, and some that were a giant failstick. Scroll through the gallery above for the best and worst examples, accompanied by our totally scientific rating system.

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NBC Is Turning ‘Saved By The Bell’, ‘Punky Brewster’, ‘Airwolf’, ‘Miami Vice’, And ‘Knight Rider’ Into Comic Books http://www.screenjunkies.com/general/nbc-is-turning-saved-by-the-bell-punky-brewster-airwolf-miami-vice-and-knight-rider-into-comic-books/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/general/nbc-is-turning-saved-by-the-bell-punky-brewster-airwolf-miami-vice-and-knight-rider-into-comic-books/#comments Wed, 03 Jul 2013 19:53:09 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=255620 There might be a market for this. But probably not.

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NBC, after about a decade of woeful network practices and strategic decisions, has experienced a bit of success recently, but unfortunately that has translated into a false sense of confidence. Confidence in the belief that comic books are supposed to be adaptations of proven popular TV shows and movies, and not the other way around.

NBC has announced that all the properties listed in the headline will become comic books. So if you were, over 20 years later, gunning for a Punky Brewster comic book. Congratulations, you giant weirdo. You got your wish. Now go finish knitting that fake chainmail for your cat.

Airwolf will debut in September, then the following titles will follow sequentially, with each title having an eight-issue run.

Ok. With this news, it’s probably time to start drinking nonstop for the next four days. Which isn’t to say I’m done posting, just that I’ll be drunk as I do.

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