The Woods 3 (July 2014)

The Woods #3

Something important happens this issue of The Woods. It becomes “‘Lost’ with teenagers.” I can’t believe it took Tynion this long. It might not have been so sadly apparent if artist Dialynas were maintaining the previous issue’s level of quality, but he’s not. The book can’t handle the writing losing any ingenuity as the art becomes problematic.

The best thing about the comic are Josan Gonzalez’s colors.

The problem, at least as far as Tynion’s responsibilities go, is the cast. No one is likable except the obviously likable, no one is bad except the obviously bad. Tynion operates in absolutes; predictable absolutes.

It’s particularly bad when there’s a shining knight scene and Dialynas draws it so poorly it looks like a guy making out with his twin sister. The art with the monsters is even lazier.

Oddly, Tynion’s cliffhanger isn’t bad and the comic’s relatively inoffensive. It’s just not worthwhile.

C 

CREDITS

Writer, James Tynion IV; artist, Michael Dialynas; colorist, Josan Gonzalez; letterer, Ed Dukeshire; editors, Jasmine Amiri and Eric Harburn; publisher, Boom! Studios.

The Woods 2 (June 2014)

The Woods #2

Tynion loses a lot of momentum with all the characters. He’s got two things going on–he’s got the kids who went into the woods and he’s got the school. The school has kids and adults. He splits the issue into two and a half–the kids in the woods, the adults at the school, then less on the kids at the school.

The school stuff is sociologically interesting. A nebbish principal letting a psychopath jock of a gym teacher pull the strings on him. It’s probably not going to go well, but it’s also very different than the kids in the woods who are encountering alien creatures.

Actually, the issue doesn’t have enough alien creatures–they’ve stopped attacking the school for some reason.

There are just too many characters moving around, especially with Dialynas not being so great on distinctive faces.

It’s still working, it’s just not working smoothly.

B 

CREDITS

Writer, James Tynion IV; artist, Michael Dialynas; colorist, Josan Gonzalez; letterer, Ed Dukeshire; editors, Jasmine Amiri and Eric Harburn; publisher, Boom! Studios.

The Woods 1 (May 2014)

The Woods #1

While The Woods seems like the most movie or TV ready comic to come out in a while–a high school is teleported to an planet with flying demons–writer James Tynion IV never actually panders to that goal. Even with a couple really uneven sections and a problematic soft cliffhanger, he's writing a comic. It's nice to read a comic, not a pitch.

The art is essential, however. It might feel like a pitch without Michael Dialynas. Dialynas paces out the quick scenes beautifully. There's one device he has where he moves into close-ups after his establishing shots–again, it works because he draws the teenagers' expressions so well.

And Tynion does quite well with the teenagers. Yes, he's writing really self-aware teenagers (it feels like a Beach movie–everyone's just a little too wise) but he's writing them well. Tynion's not pandering and trying to get a young adult audience.

It's nice.

B 

CREDITS

Writer, James Tynion IV; artist, Michael Dialynas; colorist, Josan Gonzalez; letterer, Ed Dukeshire; editors, Jasmine Amiri and Eric Harburn; publisher, Boom! Studios.

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