Heroes & Villains: Bad Luck Chuck, She Could Fly: The Lost Pilot, Jim Henson’s The Story Teller: Sirens

Wow, April already? This year is certainly slipping away before my very eyes since the summer movie season officially starts in a few weeks with the release of Avengers: Endgame. I saw a lot of chatter today about people losing their collective minds over not being able to secure tickets to the opening night screenings. (Editor’s Note: It took me 4.5 hours!)

I had two browsers and one app open to get tickets (don’t worry, I got some) and I don’t think I’ve seen this kind of reaction to a movie in recent memory. I mean, The Phantom Menace was 20 years ago and I literally bribed a stranger to get tickets for me because I had to leave the line to go and open a store I worked at. Surprisingly, I got my tickets for that and the stranger didn’t abscond with my money. Such is the power of the Force.

Always, I have a triple threat of comics for you this week…one from the past, one from the future, and one on stands TODAY. Let’s get it on.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

Bad Luck Chuck #1
Lela Gwenn (W)
Matthew Dow Smith (A)
Dark Horse Comics

This was a book I didn’t have a chance to get to in last week’s column. I’m only one writer and there are so, so many comics to read. But that’s why whatever your personal deity is created “In Case You Missed It” so that I can double back and give great books the attention they so rightfully deserve.

Bad Luck Chuck is a fun noir-ish book about a cursed woman (Charlene “Chuck” Manchester) who hires out her bad luck to the highest bidder. The book opens on a laundromat burning down around her so that her employer can collect a sweet insurance payout. Of course, an intrepid insurance claims investigator takes notice of her and we’re off to the proverbial races.

The book includes some brief, but fascinating glimpses into Chuck’s personal life which really sold me on the concept. Like, “How does someone with perpetual bad luck keep their own house from falling down around their ears?” Lots and lots of good luck charms.

She Could FlyShe Could Fly: The Lost Pilot #1
Christopher Cantrell (W)
Martin Morazzo (A)
Dark Horse Comics

Out next week from Dark Horse’s Berger Books imprint is She Could Fly: The Lost Pilot and I was super excited to see this book coming back for another run after last year’s spectacular miniseries. If you haven’t read the last one, the collected edition is conveniently out now!

This book picks up a year after the events of the first series and picks up on some of the plot threads that were left dangling after the (BLOODY) conclusion. The initial comics were interesting because of how they told the story of how one person and their family were affected by a world-changing event. The series’ scope already appears to be a bit larger than the original and I cannot wait to see where it goes.

 

Jim Henson's The StorytellerJim Henson’s The Story Teller: Sirens #1
Sztybor Bartosz (W)
Jakub Rebelka (A)
Archaia (BOOM! Studios)

If my surname wasn’t already a dead giveaway, I am a complete and total sucker for anything Henson-related. Making reservations is always a fun time “Yes, H-E-N-S-O-N…like the Muppets. No, we’re not related.” But I digress.

I believe in my very soul that BOOM! Studios’ Archaia is absolutely the right publisher for these Henson-related comics. I’ve read a fair few of them and they always get the tone and spirit of the adaptations they’re publishing. It’s truly wonderful stuff.

Were I asked, I would be hard-pressed to come up with a Henson property I wasn’t enraptured with from a very early age and The Storyteller is no exception. I own both DVD collections of the show (regular AND Greek Myths) and I’m probably overdue for a rewatch. The series was always great as a kid because it was one of those “approved curriculum” shows that teachers could put in the VCR when they needed half an hour of silence. My love of folklore and storytelling owes a lot to this show.

Sirens is a neat four issue miniseries inspired by folklore from around the world with the framing device of John Hurt’s Storyteller and his trusty dog (which was voiced by Brian Henson), as they spin siren-related yarns in front of the fire. This is a great kick off for the miniseries and it feels like a lost episode of the show so it goes without saying you shouldn’t miss this if you’re a fan.

On top of being a super entertaining read, Bartosz reimagines a Polish folktale (The Fisherman and the Mermaid) into an accessible and tidy comic adaptation. As you may have gathered, I’m not particularly well-versed in Polish folktales and this is presented in a ways that feels both satisfying and like something I’ve known all my life. Rebelka’s art feels very classic, like it was taken from an ancient storybook that the tale was first found in.

So, if you’re a fan of The Storyteller, Jim Henson stuff, or even have a young one at home that’s hungry for a new yet classic story of the fairytale variety, give this book a look.

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