With Halloween only a week away, it makes sense to be reading comics about serial killers, cults, vampires, werewolves, demons and other sorts of monsters, real or imaginary, don’t you think?
I mean, one has to get into the mood of the season, somehow. Bite size Kit Kat, Aero and Coffee Crisp bars and Reese’s Pieces or Smarties boxes, bought in bulk bags at the local supermarket, although a fine start, doesn’t seem to scratch the Halloween itch nearly enough.
So, how about a visual tale of psychics, tarot cards, crime and…lawyers? Would a mysterious character called “Madame X” help scratch your Halloween itch?
You bet she would!
National Comics, is the umbrella title by which DC Comics has been publishing one-off stories based on various obscure comic book characters. They’ve been, for the most part, re-imaginings of those characters, changing them around slightly to better fit both the twenty-first century and DC’s “New 52.”
The title, if you remember, made this column earlier this year with National Comics: Eternity #1. That was a story about a man who could talk to cadavers. It was weird, but a lot of fun. The same goes for National Comics: Looker #1, released at the end of this past summer. That was about a fashion model-turned-vampire. It, too, was enjoyable.
Are you sensing a trend? National Comics = the weird, the niche and the arcane? That trend continues with National Comics: Madame X #1.
Although Madame X (better known as Madame Xanadu) is a b-list DC Comics character, over the last few years she’s been seen quite regularly. Not only did she have her own critically acclaimed series over at Vertigo, which lasted for over two years, but she also has a starring role in the Justice League Dark series.
Which makes this particular release quite strange – strange even for a tarot-card reading, magic dealing, fighter-of-evil fortune-teller.
In National Comics: Madame X #1, our Xanadu works for a law firm as their resident psychic, using her powers to help solve strange and complicated cases. This take on the character couldn’t possibly be in the regular DC continuity, could it?
I’m thinking “no”. But what the umbrella title of National Comics has done previously is provide a venue for a very marketable take on comic book characters. By marketable, I mean enabling characters to make the transition from sequential art to other media, like television and film. Maybe Madame X could line up next fall against a Grey’s Anatomy or, better yet, follow a season two episode of Arrow!
Until then, we’ll have the comic book, sure to enthrall us with its imagery of psychic powers from the other realms! Just in time for Halloween. Just in time for that itch…
Now, where did I put that Kit Kat?
Every Wednesday, JP makes the after-work run to his local downtown comic book shop. Comics arrive on Wednesdays you see and JP, fearful that the latest issue will sell out, rushes out to purchase his copy. This regular, weekly column will highlight a particularly interesting release, written in short order, of course, because JP has to get his – before someone else does!