Comics / Comic Reviews / DC Comics

Welcome to Tranquility #10

By Zak Edwards
September 13, 2007 - 23:39

Welcome to Tranquility used to be very refreshing.  It used to be nostalgic and new all at the same time.  It used to be filled with unique characters that easily charmed audiences.  In fact, I still maintain that the characters are the best part of this series.  Lately, however, the series has been disappointing.  With the introduction of new characters while ignoring the old ones combined with unoriginal, shorter stories, Gail Simone has been destroying her series.  On top of this, every issue has been cut short with an unnecessary story at the back that takes roughly six pages from the actual story.

Simone has ignored the best parts of this series to allow for more characters to be introduced, Characters that don’t reappear.  The cowboy character introduced last issue doesn’t appear at all here, not even in the background.  Very few characters from the first arc are present at all.  While some of the more interesting ones do have roles to play in this arc, mostly Emoticon, Zeke, and Maximum Man, the majority of the cast is nowhere to be found.  As for the story itself, while nostalgic in some ways, the whole thing feels very familiar.  Zombie stories have been done to death, and this one fails to put a new spin on this old type of plot.  It feels very much like one is going through the motions:  Zombie horde rises up to eat flesh, heroes are pushed back by zombie horde.  Now all the audience is waiting for is some deus ex machina to come and make it all better again.  Out of the blue, Simone does add a commentary about the Comic Code Authority into the mix.  While her point is valid, it feels out of place.  Most publishers of comics simply avoid any confrontation with the CCA by not submitting works to it.  Even this comic was printed without CCA approval!  In the end, this comic has lost its charm.  The town of Tranquility probably has more than enough stories to tell without fountains of youth and zombie invasions, Simone should consider telling some of those with the amazing characters she’s left to stagnate.

Neil Googe’s art continues to be a perfect match for the story being told.  His style is animated enough without making everything feel like a saturday morning cartoon.  While the noses of most characters do look like strange, everything else is consistently well-done.  Googe portrays different ages with certainty and style.  There are characters of all ages in this issue, from children to very, very old, and all of them look like the age they are supposed to be without exaggeration.  Panelling is chaotic, with scenes switching mid-page, or a single panel from a different scene appearing in another scene.  While this does require more concentration to read, the effect works well with the hectic feel of the issue.  A lot is going on, many of the characters are probably feeling disorientated, and Googe portrays this through his artwork.

As for the six-page story in the back, the whole thing feels like an incredible waste of time.  It is a complete rip-off of Scooby-Doo, complete with a cowardly talking dog and a four member team solving seemingly supernatural mystery.  The sole difference is that these kids have super-powers and the only thing missing is the villain saying “And I would have gotten away with it if it weren’t for you meddling kids!” to make this carbon copy complete.  If I wanted to experience something like this, I would wake up early next Saturday and watch some Hanna-Barbera cartoons, for free.

Poorly contrived plot and horrible back-up story.  At least the art works well.

Rating: 4 /10

Last Updated: July 2, 2020 - 16:53

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