Once again, the Messner-Loebs illustrated story is the best in Wasteland. But this time it’s on the somewhat autobiographical Close story. Teenage runaway Close works backstage in a horror show circus; things go dangerously wrong. Close’s dialogue’s fantastic, very smooth transitions, lots of humor. Messner-Loebs excels at the variety too.
The second story, with George Freeman art, and Ostrander and Close collaborating on the script, is the issue’s least. It’s still good and funny–Shirley MacLaine inhabits Genghis Khan for a song–but there’s nothing to it. It has a great setup and punchline, but it’s not special.
The final story, with both writers (and Lloyd on art), has an excellent muted payoff. The story’s standout is Lloyd and his visual pacing of a child welfare interview. It’s a strange case, but Lloyd’s meticulous, precise panels would make it compelling even if it weren’t.
Wasteland continues to impress.
That’s Entertainment; writers, Del Close and John Ostrander; artist and letterer, William Messner-Loebs. Ghengis Sings!; writers, Ostrander and Close; artist, George Freeman; letterer, Ron Muns. Warning Signals; writers, Close and Ostrander; artist, David Lloyd; letterer, Steve Craddock. Colorist, Lovern Kindzierski; editor, Mike Gold; publisher, DC Comics.
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