Monday, May 3, 2010

A Sneak Peek at Dynamite's Phantom.

I obtained this image through my usual diligent reporting and research. Okay. I swiped it from Chronicle Chamber's blog.

This is our first look at what Dynamite Entertainment has in store for The Phantom franchise.

I'm not going to sit here and editorialize and tell you all what to think about this. I'll just let this image speak for itself. I await your comments.


  1. Atrocious. This is way worse than any other bastardization of a classic costume or character. They are turning him into a glorified serial-killer, one part Lobo, one part Wolverine, one part Punisher, the whole thing~ TERRIBLE~!

  2. I hope this version turns into a ghost really fast.
    What's that sound?
    It's Lee Falk spinning in his grave.

  3. ...And people ask why the American Phantom comic books never last, while the Swedish one celebrates 60 years this year...
    (Anniversary book to be published in September!)

  4. People should not jumping and throwing stones before watching what is really in store. So far this image seems to want to touch heavily on the Supernatural aspect of the character, which is fair game, its one of the three main aspects of the Phantom as a heroic character.

    - Other publishers, Moonstone included have touched upon the idea that there is more to the ritual, before the son takes the mantle of the father, than just picking the rings up. There is this Symbolism, in using the "war" paint of the first Phantom, and that actually looks interesting to me.

    - We will probably see the dress up costume, since Alex Ross never deviated heavily when designing iconic characters like these. It should also be noted that thus far, every main Dynamite enterprise of a classic hero, has started with a "year One" approach, in re-telling origins for a new audience.

    - It can also be an image about how evil sees the Phantom. We have seen in multiple stories (mainly by U.S publishers, true) that the Phantom takes the shape of a demon, with hard and scary features. Well, he should be scary even on his real self, but the point of view, may be what this piece is trying to convey.

    - If this ends up being actually "the" costume, i think it is interesting in the jungle setting. The paint (i am not going to assume is blodd, Ross loves the classics..) dripping on his body rags heavily of African mythology and culture. Again, war paints, man.

    In the end, this teaser does what it is suppose to do. It makes us want to find out what it will happen with the character and for that i am interested so far.

  5. Oh and Pidde, the European comic book market and the Us market are different things. Not better or worse, just different animals with different mechanics.

  6. Well, the question is why they don't just create a new character. Captain Africa. I think one of the reasons The Phantom has stayed popular in Scandinavia, is that The Phantom's character and attitude has developed throughout the years, it's basically the same guy, but adapted for the readers of certain periods. One could still recognize The Phantom, he was never changed into something totally different character-, story- or artwise, but he still felt fresh. Okay, besides in some latter Lee Falk episodes...

  7. I believe Pidde's point is well taken. Outside of the US, companies haven't tried to change the fundamental character of the Phantom, and he has been far more successful. These same companies seem to also have a better understanding of what it takes to sell comics to a wider audience. It seems that so many American companies want to make the character different, in order to appeal to a fanboy audience, instead of trying to appeal to the masses as comics used to do. I am appalled by what Dynamite has done to other once classic characters. Owners of the rights to these characters should do more to protect the integrity of their holdings.

  8. Let's try to remain calm. The new phantom doesn't look that horrible, well, okay the blood-like streaks and voodoo mouth make me a bit tense.

    And, Pidde, the "Swedish" phantom serves an audience of, what, 17 or 18 fans? The stakes are a bit different over here in the States where the big boys play. BTY: is that pronounced "Peed" or "Pied" or "Pid"? Curious readers want to know.

  9. At Piddle:

    They don`t create a new character because they want to write the Phantom. Now sure, likely not the Phantom as we know it, but i think the idea that a creative team wants to add something new on an existent aspect of the character (in this case the supernatural angle, the vodoo, if you like it) is equally valid as someone else writting the character as we are used to.

    I think, without trying to guess whether it will be good on execution or not, since either is possible, that kind of exercise in the end paids off in terms of getting the range of aspects you can work on the character, wider and wider, and future writers will likely be happy for it.

    Personally, if this is suppose to be a Year One thing, like with the Ranger, and Kit is using this for an arc or two, i don`t mind. I loved the changes of Moonstone, regarding the body paint. It made more sense, to me, that the Phantom would not wait until he fashioned a full fabricated costume before saving the tribe that he befriended. He is a hero, he does not wait with a cause on his hand, because of a more trivial move.

    It always made more sense, that first he would use a sort of war paint (that fits well with the African mysticism background) to fashion himself an identity, and then later make a proper costume based on that.

    My two cents, of course.

    At Sharp:

    It`s not a bad point, yes. The Scandinavian Phantom mag is one of the oldest and longest running in Europe today, and all the credit for them about it. I love it, as much i loved Moonstone. The thing is, this is totally a different market, dominated by two giants: Marvel and DC, and characters married with a bunch of different media, like Batman and etc.

    The public you have to please is different, the market is different and the takes of characters kind of need to be more shocking to get and grab the attention. I love the classic Phantom, but i understand that a character will never really lose with a wider and more diverse backstory and concepts.

    Think of this as the perhaps the "Dark Knight Returns" for the Phantom, with hopefully no pre teen sidekick and a murdering spree, since that would take it way far, and would be a character and writting FLAW, that got really little to do with his look. The look can vary around the same lines and symbols, the character however is what needs to remain consistant.