Ever since Dark Horse Comics became the “House of Joss Whedon” in the comic book world, fans have been clamoring for further tales of Mal Reynolds and the crew of the Serenity. While the Serenity franchise has come back from the mass grave of cancelled Fox television series more than once (as a feature film and as several previously released limited comics and graphic novels from Dark Horse), this latest trip into the black (titled, quiet poetically, Serenity: Leaves on the Wind) is highly anticipated, long awaited, and feels deeply and truly like a genuine reunion for the characters and their loyal fans. Serenity: Leaves on the Wind is the gutsy, ambitious, and canon-establishing type of licensed series that Dark Horse pioneered with Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8, and one can only hope it eventually results in an ongoing series for Joss’ “cowboys in space” tale, as well.
Joss and company have done it again, my fellow Browncoats. They’ve done the impossible. Serenity is back . . . savor that for a moment.
MINOR SPOILERS BELOW
Let’s just start off with this: Serenity: Leaves on the Wind #1 is damn near perfect! Zack Whedon, who has done stellar work on previous Dark Horse books like Serenity: A Shepherd’s Tale and Terminator 1984, delivers a script that is superb on every level and sure to please long-time fans. Whedon’s handle of the characters is flawless, and he manages to keep the heart, humor, and excitement of the original TV show while still allowing the continuing story to expand, showing readers the politically polarizing condition of the “post-Miranda revelation” ‘verse. It may be a harsher and colder world than before (especially with the absence of our beloved Hoben Washburne *single tear*), but our crew is still flying and Whedon has plenty of startling (and sometimes sexy) surprises in store for his readers, including the return of a presumably disgruntled foe from the past (is the Serenity crew about to get a KAAAAAHHHNNN?).
Artist Georges Jeanty is the man behind the art in Serenity: Leaves on the Wind, and if the first issue is any example of what is to come, his work on this series is some of his best yet, perhaps even better than his stunning run on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It’s amazing how perfectly and gracefully Jeanty and Whedon’s efforts capture the feel of the Serenity and her crew. Jeanty was clearly born to wear a browncoat, and readers will be overjoyed to have him “enlisted” for the long run. A shout out also must be given to Laura Martin’s colors (She’s clearly the “Jayne” to Jeanty’s “Mal” in the art department.) which are beautiful and vibrant.
FINAL VERDICT: A MUST READ for any Serenity fan!!! Do not miss this one, Browncoats. Hopefully, this series follows the path cut by Buffy: Season 8 and brings new readers (and new dollars for brick-and-mortar retailers) into the comic book world. It’s books like Serenity: Leaves on the Wind that offer a real chance to turn non-comic book readers into true fans of the sequential art medium, and I can not recommend you picking up this book enough. Have you bought your copy yet???
Serenity: Leaves on the Wind #1 will be released tomorrow, Wednesday, January 29th, 2014. For more info on the series and to read a free preview of the first issue, stop by the official Dark Horse Comics website.
You can also check out my interview with artist Georges Jeanty from Comikaze Expo 2013 here, where we discuss his work on Serenity: Leaves on the Wind and the difficulty in drawing the interiors of such a “well-known” spaceship.
Finally, don’t miss the Season 4 premiere of The Fanboy Scoop: Week in Review podcast (over at Fanboy Comics) which features Georges Jeanty as a special guest!
That’s all for now, comic book sniffers! And, again, Serenity is back, folks . . . they couldn’t take the sky from us.
That’s pretty gorram cool.
’Till the end of the world,
Bryant the Comic Book Slayer