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  • #91
    I will probably still pick up The Shadow trade as I have been a fan of the character since I was a kid and I used to listen to tapes of the radio drama that my grandparents had. I am not asking for him to be a boy scout (though I do believe there is a place and a real need for that kind of hero) and I am not even saying he shouldn't be allowed to kill but even darker heroes like Batman stop short of mass murder.

    I also still believe that since Dynamite is doing both books it would make sense to differentiate them by making one hero (again I would prefer shadow) to be a little more heroic. Again I know I am in the minority and most people today probably want their heroes to be more gray and more willing to kill even if that is not the only option but. . . is that really a "heroic" thing to do?

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    • #92
      Originally posted by BatHobbit View Post
      I will probably still pick up The Shadow trade as I have been a fan of the character since I was a kid and I used to listen to tapes of the radio drama that my grandparents had. I am not asking for him to be a boy scout (though I do believe there is a place and a real need for that kind of hero) and I am not even saying he shouldn't be allowed to kill but even darker heroes like Batman stop short of mass murder.

      I also still believe that since Dynamite is doing both books it would make sense to differentiate them by making one hero (again I would prefer shadow) to be a little more heroic. Again I know I am in the minority and most people today probably want their heroes to be more gray and more willing to kill even if that is not the only option but. . . is that really a "heroic" thing to do?
      Whether or not it's the heroic thing to do, it's what the Shadow does. Take away that edge and you might as well just create a new character, I think.

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      • #93
        I am liking the Shadow. Agree #2 started out a little slow. I like how we are getting more morsels of what they are up against in the Japanese High Command. We are also getting subtle gimpses into the Shadow's powers. I would like to see a little more of the super powers come out, but I suspect that will come as the title develops. Still trying to get a better grasp on the relationship between Cranston and Lane. In #1, Cranston makes references to the "master" Lane belongs to, but then it seems like there is a consensual relationship goinig on.

        Lots of questions to answer which should make some good reading.

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        • #94
          Missed Cranston's reference to Lane's "master". Will have to read this again. Referring to himself (as The Shadow) in the third person? Seems a bit odd, but who knows.

          I wonder -- is it even possible that the Cranston referring to Lane's "master" is NOT The Shadow, but the REAL Cranston?
          Last edited by positronic; 05-29-2012, 06:21 PM.
          DE pull list: Will Eisner's The Spirit: The Corpse Makers, ERB's The Greatest Adventure, Green Hornet '66 Meets The Spirit, PSP: Herokillers, KISS/Vampirella, Mighty Mouse

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          • #95
            Originally posted by BatHobbit View Post
            I know in a few interpretations the shadow kills and that is not even the issue for me. What I don't like is how he comes across as borderline psychotic. I will probably get flak for saying I was hoping for a version more in line with the Alec Baldwin film where he still fights and even uses guns but still comes across as a good guy. Even in the original radio serials the Shadow was not such a violent character.
            I think we touched on this on another thread. One of the difficulties with the Shadow is that he has been portrayed in different ways in different media over the years. The Baldwin film portrayed him one way, with some magical powers. Prior comic book versions portrayed him another way. The "original" radio shows portrayed him another way, with an uncanny hypnotic power to cloud minds. And the even more original pulp novels gave him no mystic powers at all--he simply dressed in black and hung around in the...Shadows. (Think ninja.). The pulp character used guns freely to kill wrongdoers, but he was not psychotic about it. He was very clinical and controlled. The radio character seldom used a gun at all. Baldwin used both gun and supernatural powers.

            The trouble is that all those versions have their fans who think that that is the way that the Shadow should be. DE's version is trying to satisfy as many as possible. I prefer the pulp novel version but I am willing to tolerate the more mystical overtones that DE is adding to the character because I understand that others are looking for that. Besides, if I want "my" version of the Shadow, I can always have it--I just have to read the novels again. If you want your version, you just need to call up a recording of the radio show. And we both can enjoy DE's version for what it is--DE's version.

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            • #96
              Originally posted by positronic View Post
              Missed Cranston's reference to Lane's "master". Will have to read this again. Referring to himself (as The Shadow) in the third person? Seems a bit odd, but who knows.

              I wonder -- is it even possible that the Cranston referring to Lane's "master" is NOT The Shadow, but the REAL Cranston?
              I missed it too, but just looked it up. Cranston says to her: "You know the weed of crime bears bitter fruit. Bears pus and poison. Taints the world, makes God a lie. You chose to serve a master who would stamp it back into the dirt; you swore an oath to do his bidding. You are his agent and his spy, and yet your hands are stained with very little blood...In your heart, you are thankful he is there to do the butcher-work."

              So the "master" would not be the real Cranston. It must be referring to the Shadow. And while I'd like to believe this was the real Cranston talking, referring to the Shadow, that doesn't really fit either considering (just before this speech) he was discussing how he can see the future. So I am afraid that we have to assume he was talking about himself in the third person.

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              • #97
                Tulku I like your approach. Yes I liked the original radio show but I have to admit the Baldwin film is my favorite because it was more action oriented. I do like that the DE version is including the mystic stuff as well as the guns. I guess this Shadow could be considered a "greatest hits" version of the character.

                I will keep reading, who knows, perhaps his journey from anti hero to something more noble is the tale being told. If not. . . it won't be the last telling of the story and it IS a worthy addition to the canon.

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                • #98
                  Great summation, Tulku. The comics and the movies have always had the ungainly task of trying to reconcile the essentially irreconcilable differences between the Shadow novels (because in comics and on film, we need to see that hawk-nosed, slouch-hatted, black-clad image from the pulp covers) and the mind-clouding, invisible Shadow of the radio show (where he was never seen, either by the audience or the characters in the show -- only his microphone-filtered, mocking laugh was heard).

                  Some days I feel like the Fighting Yank too.
                  Last edited by positronic; 05-30-2012, 03:37 AM.
                  DE pull list: Will Eisner's The Spirit: The Corpse Makers, ERB's The Greatest Adventure, Green Hornet '66 Meets The Spirit, PSP: Herokillers, KISS/Vampirella, Mighty Mouse

                  Comment


                  • #99
                    Yeah, without looking at it, I had a glimmer of hope that Ennis might somehow acknowledge that Allard assumes any identity he chooses like other men change their wardrobe, including doing perfect impersonations of existing people like Cranston. I was a little let down to learn that it's pretty easy for the bad guys to figure out that The Shadow has gone under the names of Cranston and Allard. Here it seems that all he really does it assume a name and a persona.

                    But I really thought it was the other thing. It's the kind of thing you can only get away with in comics. That kind of carrying on about yourself in the third person would sound ridiculous on film. In that little speech it almost seems like he's using his powers of hypnosis on Margo -- "You know... You chose... you swore... you are..." When I snap my fingers, you will awaken with no memory of this conversation! Yeah, he really has a way with women, like Svengali or Charlie Manson.

                    I always thought it was a little strange that in the novels the real Cranston lets The Shadow take over his life for large chunks of time, yet he never really figures in any of the novels as an agent. Whether Cranston allows this out of some kind of past debt to the Shadow or out of fear of the Shadow is never really clear (maybe a little of both). Regardless, I was always hoping for a novel in which he played more than just a bit part.
                    Last edited by positronic; 05-30-2012, 04:27 AM.
                    DE pull list: Will Eisner's The Spirit: The Corpse Makers, ERB's The Greatest Adventure, Green Hornet '66 Meets The Spirit, PSP: Herokillers, KISS/Vampirella, Mighty Mouse

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by positronic View Post
                      Unfortunately, when DE took a stab at reprinting the Golden Age Green Hornet Remastered, it sold pretty poorly. I think their mistake was in doing it as a regular comic instead of just presenting it as a deluxe hardcover reprint from the get-go. Wish they'd start an "Archives/Masterworks"-type program. Other than a few artist-centric books, DE really hasn't tapped the market for deluxe hardcover reprint volumes yet.

                      I doubt you'll see a Shadow video game unless Sam Raimi gets his Shadow movie off the ground.
                      I think I agree on the GH Remastered -- I passed on the singles when they were coming out, because that's not how I want to collect that sort of work (and I LOVE golden age material). The HC which eventually followed was a bit pricey though.

                      Mostly what I want to see with the Shadow is a new tpb of the O'Neil/Kaluta run from the '70's (or actually that whole series, including the Robbins work, as I'm a fan of his as well). I'd also like to see the minis from the '90's reprinted. I can forego the Shadow series of the '80's which follows Chaykin's work; I think it wound up being pretty atrocious.

                      And I think they should do the game without the movie. I think if they took their time and did a good one, it'd be a way of planting seeds about the character in a new generation of fans. A good game that was well-received would go far with re-introducing the character to people.

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                      • I wouldn't mind seeing TPBs reprinting DC's 1989 The Shadow Strikes! either. That was actually The Shadow's longest running series (31 issues plus 1 annual) since Street & Smith's golden age Shadow Comics (101 issues). I'd love to see some sort of Archives-type volume with JUST the Shadow stories from Shadow Comics (despite the title, it was an anthology-type book like the early Action or Detective Comics). When Dark Horse Archives reprinted Green Lama, they reprinted all the "filler" material which made me feel like I was getting ripped off.

                        Agreed they can skip the Andy Helfer/Kyle Baker series. That was a little too bizarre to be called The Shadow.
                        DE pull list: Will Eisner's The Spirit: The Corpse Makers, ERB's The Greatest Adventure, Green Hornet '66 Meets The Spirit, PSP: Herokillers, KISS/Vampirella, Mighty Mouse

                        Comment


                        • There are a couple of interesting Shadow pieces I'd like to see. Didn't Marvel do a Shadow hard Cover Graphic at one point?
                          Always remember, Murphy was an optimist
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                          • I am not as familiar with the original Shadow as you guys are. I am gathering that in the original, the Shadow is more than just an alter ego whom Cranston becomes (ie Batman to Bruce Wayne). rather, the Shadow is more of a different entity that takes over Cranston (ie the Hulk to Bruce Banner or Mr Hyde to Dr Jeckyll)? Interesting.

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                            • Originally posted by Ghornet2 View Post
                              There are a couple of interesting Shadow pieces I'd like to see. Didn't Marvel do a Shadow hard Cover Graphic at one point?
                              They did, with a great story about WW2. It's also by O'Neil and Kaluta, who did the DC series. If you look around at some used book stores you can probably find a copy. I come across them with some regularity -- and I mean your average, used paperback type of store. Probably seen 4 in the last year.

                              Still, I'd pick up a new version.

                              Comment


                              • It is more a case of true identity theft. The real Cranston, besides being filthy rich, loved to travel the world. During his prolonged absences, the Shadow assumed his identity. Fairly early on in the novels, the real Cranston confronted the Shadow about it and the Shadow explained that he knew more details about Cranston's life then Cranston could remember--so that if the real Cranston ever challenged him, the Shadow would make it seem like the real Cranston was a fraud. So, early on, Cranston cooperated out of fear. Later he seemed to be more willing to play along--perhaps approving of what the Shadow was doing. In the 1930s, that wouldn't be too difficult. If he went to Africa to travel, there was no easy way to check on it. However, many, many novels later, the real Cranston, while traveling, was injured and thus made headlines in NY--unfortunately while the Shadow was pretending to be him. This forced the Shadow to temporarily drop the Cranston identity and use his (alleged) real identity of aviator Kent Allard (supposedly lost in the Amazon for years). But after a few Allard stories, the Shadow apparently decided that it was safe to reassume the Cranston identity.

                                There is a funny scene in one of the novels just after Margo Lane was introduced to the novels (she was on the radio show long before she made it to the books): Apparently the real Cranston is the one who first made Margo's acquaintance while on a ship. But she then stayed in NY and attached herself to the person she thought was "Cranston"--resulting in the Shadow grumbling (somewhat jokingly) about how Cranston had saddled him with Lane!

                                [edited for typos]

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