Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Dan Dare Review, Reviewed
I was very excited to receive an email from the artist on the new Dan Dare series, Gary Erskine. He read my Dan Dare #1 review on Sequential Tart, and was happy to receive a positive review of the issue. Which, by the way, the comic DID deserve.
Here's what he said:
Your positive review cheered me up tremendously after the initial worry and dread of the critical response of handling such a well loved British hero and institution. The Dare Legacy is one not to screw around with and Garth and I are very passionate about doing the character right and proper. It’s pleasing to know that some people appreciate what we are trying to do without twisting the knife with cruel spiteful reviews (or pre-release opinions!) The Hampson fans are also coming round and understanding that a retro facsimile of the 50s book just wouldn’t work with today’s audience. Neither would a radical re-invention. We have really tried to find a bridge between all fans’ expectations and shown that we love the character.
I only know the bare bones of the old Dan Dare series, and have never read it, so I can't really compare what they are doing with it now to what it was before. But as someone new to the character I very much enjoyed that first issue and did not find it confusing without knowing the whole back story. I know that Dan Dare was a BIG deal in the UK, maybe like Superman to us, so I am sure that people were wary and quick to criticize this new version. But, as Erskine says, they can't just take the 50's character and redo the comics and expect to get a new audience interested. Look at Battlestar Galactica, Doctor Who, and even Indiana Jones - these stories that people loved 10+ years ago have had to evolve as time passed in order to capture a new audience and keep the stories relevant.
I wish Ennis and Erskine much success with this mini-series. Issue #2 comes out this week (Friday, in case you forgot) and if you have not checked it out, I encourage you to do so.