Saturday, May 8, 2010

All Right, Smart Guy! What Would YOU Do?

I really hadn't wanted to get into this sort of thing. I mean, I'm a blogger, so I guess that means I'm sort of an opinion factory but, I really don't relish the idea of proposing my alternate approach, only to sound like an armchair quarterback.

But, then again, Hell, it's my blog and I have the floor, so to speak.



I would start at the beginning. I would re-tell the original "Story of the Singh Brotherhood" storyline from 1934. I haven't decided yet if I'd make it a period piece or make it modern day. There are distinct advantages to both.

If I made it modern, I'd obviously have to change all the stuff about ambergris to something else of value and interest (oil?) since using whale product is no longer in vogue.

I would, regardless of time-frame, reset the locale. Instead of Africa, I'd move us back to the Indian Ocean. Maybe combine Bengali with the original story's setting of the island of Luntok and call it "Bengali-Luntok" or something. Things there would have a distinct feeling of Southern Asia intermixed with Pacific Island cultures. Elements of both have persisited in modern day "Bangalla" even into the 80's and 90's.

From that storyline, I would let things take their course.

I would get King Features involved in a two-pronged marketing campaign, taking advantage of their vast, newspaper and internet news connections and really talk this re-launch up in advance.

The thrust of my publicity would resonate with the first half of the storyline (Which I would spread out over the first 12-24 issues)- Who IS The Phantom? I'd make the whole thing very mysterious and make it seem a lot more credible that Jimmy Wells could be the Phantom. Using benefit of hindsight, I'd weave the folklore part in a little earlier. Have more scenes of Singh operatives in NYC trembling with rumors that The Ghost Who Walks has followed them from the So. Pacific...

Well, you get the idea. Anyway, that's how I'd do it. Heck, KFS usually only licenses their properties to a comics publisher for 2 years at a time, maximum. Maybe I'll apply for the license next.

Well, I can dream, can't I?


  1. That sounds absolutely awesome! I'd buy that title in a New York Minute!

  2. I'm feeling your pain on this one too , friend. Have to assume you are referring to the upcoming "The Last Phantom" travesty, and I know that not having seen it is probably not playing fair to critique it at this point, but damn it, The Phantom is just so iconic.

    Why fix what isn't broken?

    Mind you, Alex Ross artwork is good stuff, but the first time that I saw blood running down the guys head in the pre-release images - I questioned whether this was an effort worth mounting.

    The version you've detailed in this post seems far, far more in spirit with what should be done with the property and like Mykal, I would buy your title in a second.

  3. Thanks, Chuck. I sure hope somebody out there tries my outlined approach sometime.

  4. I'm on board with your vision, too.