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Preview: Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia Vol. 1

Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia Vol. 1

Authors: Mark Gatiss, Steven Moffat
Artist: Jay
Publisher: Titan Comics
Softcover, $12.99, £9.99
On sale 22 September 2020
ISBN: 9781787733169

They say there is nothing more frightening than the blank page… and up until now, they’d probably be right.

Fresh from confronting Moriarty in the end of The Great Game, Sherlock Holmes (Benedict Cumberbatch) and John Watson (Martin Freeman) are called to save the royal family from blackmail at the hands of Irene Adler (Lara Pulver), a dominatrix known as “The Woman” …

Presented in original, back-to-front manga format, artist Jay captures the wit, suspense and emotion of the multi award-winning BBC series in Sherlock’s greatest case A SCANDAL IN BELGRAVIA PART ONE, released for the first time in English from Titan Comics on September 22, 2020.

Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia Vol. 1

Review: Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia Vol. 1

SHERLOCK HOLMES: A SCANDAL IN BELGRAVIA VOL. 1

Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson are two of my favorite characters. I’ve read the lion’s share of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock novels and many of the works they inspired from later writers. I can practically quote the Guy Ritchie films. I’ve even portrayed Dr. Watson on stage and brought other Doyle characters to life in adaptations of classic radio dramas. So when I saw a Sherlock Holmes comic on the list of titles available to review this week, I was ecstatic. I soon realized that Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia is an adaptation of the British television series. The first volume of this Sherlock series, presented as a manga by Titan Comics, presents a direct adaptation of the series’ fourth episode.

Now I’ve never seen Sherlock, though I’ve heard good things. Most of the praise revolves around the fact that Benedict Cumberbatch is the star. I’ve got nothing against Mr. Cumberbatch, but hearing his name is not enough to make me seek out a movie or film in which he’s featured. Plus, I don’t have cable. However, after reading A Scandal in Belgravia, I find myself motivated to head over to one of the streaming services I subscribe to and seek out the show. Since I haven’t seen the specific episode, I can’t say how faithful of an adaptation this manga is to the original show. What I can say is, this first volume was a very enjoyable read.

The original version of this manga was published in Japan by Kadokawa. The folks at Titan Comics have translated the issues into English so that those of us who don’t speak Japanese can enjoy this Sherlock Holmes adventure. For those who are fans of the television show, artist JAY. does a great job of capturing the likenesses of Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman (who plays Watson on the show). My favorite panels were those that show Sherlock engaged in the process of deduction. The way JAY. highlights the details of the person Sherlock is observing makes the reader feel like they are looking through the detective’s eyes. JAY. also cleverly illustrates the fact that Sherlock can’t get a read on Irene Adler.

This is a modern take on Sherlock Holmes, and it took me quite a few pages to get used to Watson writing a blog on a computer and Holmes talking about his website. There’s quite a bit of humor in the manga and as one would expect from an adaptation of a British television show, the dialogue is very pithy. Steven Moffat, who wrote the episode the manga is adapting, does a great job of capturing the tone and pacing of the conversations between Watson and Holmes. Moffat seems to have a rich understanding of the detectives’ relationship and this detail is evident throughout the story. Moffat also does a good job with the interactions between Adler and Holmes. JAY. helps sell the moments between adventuress and detective by illustrating quick glances and meaningful looks between the two. Adler playfully besting Holmes in a game of wits is a common scenario in Sherlock stories. Moffat not only puts a creative spin on his version of their first tête-à-tête but also leaves the reader excited to see future interactions between the two characters.

There’s a lot to like about Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia, but it’s probably not the right book for every comic reader. The story is dialogue-heavy and has slow pacing. Although the artwork is well-drawn, this book is still manga. There are no bright colors and most of the panels feature people talking. As a result, those who aren’t used to reading manga, or those who aren’t as interested in a modern adaptation of Sherlock Holmes, may find that this book fails to hold their attention. It is for those reasons that I’m giving A Scandal in Belgravia a general recommendation of ‘Read.’ That all being said, if you’re a fan of Sherlock Holmes, regardless of the adaptation style, this is a book you’ll want to consider adding to your collection.

Created by Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat Written by Steven Moffat
Art and Adaptation by JAY Lettering by Amoona Saohin
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Read

Titan Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: comiXologyAmazonKindleBookshop

Advance Review: Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia Vol. 1

SHERLOCK HOLMES: A SCANDAL IN BELGRAVIA VOL. 1

Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson are two of my favorite characters. I’ve read the lion’s share of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock novels and many of the works they inspired from later writers. I can practically quote the Guy Ritchie films. I’ve even portrayed Dr. Watson on stage and brought other Doyle characters to life in adaptations of classic radio dramas. So when I saw a Sherlock Holmes comic on the list of titles available to review this week, I was ecstatic. I soon realized that Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia is an adaptation of the British television series. The first volume of this Sherlock series, presented as a manga by Titan Comics, presents a direct adaptation of the series’ fourth episode.

Now I’ve never seen Sherlock, though I’ve heard good things. Most of the praise revolves around the fact that Benedict Cumberbatch is the star. I’ve got nothing against Mr. Cumberbatch, but hearing his name is not enough to make me seek out a movie or film in which he’s featured. Plus, I don’t have cable. However, after reading A Scandal in Belgravia, I find myself motivated to head over to one of the streaming services I subscribe to and seek out the show. Since I haven’t seen the specific episode, I can’t say how faithful of an adaptation this manga is to the original show. What I can say is, this first volume was a very enjoyable read.

The original version of this manga was published in Japan by Kadokawa. The folks at Titan Comics have translated the issues into English so that those of us who don’t speak Japanese can enjoy this Sherlock Holmes adventure. For those who are fans of the television show, artist JAY. does a great job of capturing the likenesses of Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman (who plays Watson on the show). My favorite panels were those that show Sherlock engaged in the process of deduction. The way JAY. highlights the details of the person Sherlock is observing makes the reader feel like they are looking through the detective’s eyes. JAY. also cleverly illustrates the fact that Sherlock can’t get a read on Irene Adler.

This is a modern take on Sherlock Holmes, and it took me quite a few pages to get used to Watson writing a blog on a computer and Holmes talking about his website. There’s quite a bit of humor in the manga and as one would expect from an adaptation of a British television show, the dialogue is very pithy. Steven Moffat, who wrote the episode the manga is adapting, does a great job of capturing the tone and pacing of the conversations between Watson and Holmes. Moffat seems to have a rich understanding of the detectives’ relationship and this detail is evident throughout the story. Moffat also does a good job with the interactions between Adler and Holmes. JAY. helps sell the moments between adventuress and detective by illustrating quick glances and meaningful looks between the two. Adler playfully besting Holmes in a game of wits is a common scenario in Sherlock stories. Moffat not only puts a creative spin on his version of their first tête-à-tête but also leaves the reader excited to see future interactions between the two characters.

There’s a lot to like about A Scandal in Belgravia, but it’s probably not the right book for every comic reader. The story is dialogue-heavy and has slow pacing. Although the artwork is well-drawn, this book is still manga. There are no bright colors and most of the panels feature people talking. As a result, those who aren’t used to reading manga, or those who aren’t as interested in a modern adaptation of Sherlock Holmes, may find that this book fails to hold their attention. It is for those reasons that I’m giving A Scandal in Belgravia a general recommendation of ‘Read.’ That all being said, if you’re a fan of Sherlock Holmes, regardless of the adaptation style, this is a book you’ll want to consider adding to your collection.

Created by Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat Written by Steven Moffat
Art and Adaptation by JAY Lettering by Amoona Saohin
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Read

Titan Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Pre-Order for September 22 release: comiXologyAmazonKindleBookshop

Preview: Sherlock Series 1 Boxed Set

SHERLOCK SERIES 1 BOXED SET

Writer: Stephen Moffat, Mark Gatiss
Artist: Jay
Publisher: Titan Comics
Hardcover, $38.99, £29.99
On sale: December 4, 2018
ISBN: 9781785868788

Adapting the first series of the smash-hit TV series into the manga format, collected together in this fantastic Slipcase Edition!

This Slipcase Edition collects together the first series of the Sherlock TV show in manga format, including The Study In Pink, The Blind Banker and The Great Game, printed for the first time in the US.

Movie Review: Christopher Robin

christopher robin poster“Oh Pooh. You’re not a bear of very little brain. You’re a bear of humongous heart.”

Ewan McGregor as a middle-aged, overworked Christopher Robin says this to his former childhood toy, but he may as well have been describing this movie.  Heavy on sentiment and nonsense, light on plot or fresh character takes this isn’t a bad movie. It’s quite literally the cinematic equivalent of hugging your childhood stuffed animal or security blanket, remembering when times were simpler and having a twinge of midlife crisis.

The original Disney The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh begins with a narrator telling us “This could be the room of any small boy. But it just so happens to belong to a boy named Christopher Robin.” This movie — a live action sequel to the previous Pooh catalog — could be about the lost childhood of any middle aged man, but it just so happens to belong to a man named Christopher Robin. In post-war England, he finds himself under the thumb of a lazy and unscrupulous boss (Mark Gatiss) who forces him to work long hours and weekends — forgoing a planned holiday with his wife (the always lovely Hayley Atwell) and precocious daughter. This is familiar Disney material– father loses his way, and needs some magical element to help him reclaim his childhood wonder and imagination.

Meanwhile, deep in the Hundred Acre Wood of Christopher Robin’s childhood imagination, Pooh awakens after a long rest and can’t find his friends. Instead, he travels to London to fetch Christopher Robin from the tedium of planning an important meeting and off they go to find ‘Tigger, Kanga, Roo, Piglet, Eeyore, Owl, and Rabbit. And of course, wackiness ensues, and they have t fight nasty heffalumps and woozles and learn to have childlike wonder again.

A lot of praise needs to go to Ewan McGregor for his work here, as the entire film rests on his shoulders. In much of the movie, it’s just him acting against an imaginary stuffed animal. He’s really charming and delightful, and the supporting cast are almost equally as god. The voice cast here playing the stuffed animals are also great. Legendary voice artist Jim Cummings basically is Pooh and Tigger, having inhabited these roles for decades now.  There’s also some brilliant casting of Brad Garrett as Eeyore and Peter Capaldi as Rabbit, but they are sadly underused as most of the film concentrates only on Christopher Robin and Pooh.

As stated previously, this is a script of very little brain, and very much predictability. But it’s pure, uncut Disney nostalgia straight from the source. For those who grew up with Pooh and are bringing their children or grandchildren to see this, you will enjoy this in direct relation to how much nostalgia you have for this particular property or classic Disney in general. It will generally feel like this movie was almost made more for adults than children– the message almost certainly is. And for true Disney superfans, stay through the credits to see and hear Richard Sherman (who co-write the original Pooh songs and half of the classic Disney songbook) perform a new song he wrote specifically for this film. He’ still got it.

Someone needed to remind these folks they were making a children’s movie, as the moral center seems more focused on shaming workaholic middle aged people. And the tone of the film for its first act is extremely dour. It finally picks up in predictable fashion and ends strong with a lot of heart. But with Paddington 2 having hit earlier this year, it’s unfortunate that Disney’s return to this familiar territory didn’t land better as it can’t stack up to the more charming sequel. There are also several Disney movies with this same basic idea, and this compares even less favorably against those.

3.5 out of 5 stars

Preview: Sherlock: The Great Game #6

SHERLOCK: THE GREAT GAME #6

Writer/co-creator: Mark Gatiss
Co-creator: Steven Moffat
Art: Jay.
Cover A Simon Myers
Cover B Will Brooks
Publisher: Titan Comics
FC – 46pp – $4.99 – On sale: January 3, 2018

FINAL ISSUE!

After an intense struggle, the Golem escapes, sparing the lives of Sherlock and John. Back at the gallery, the bomber calls, using a child as a hostage, and pressures Sherlock into proving that the suspicious painting was fake. The gallery curator admits the forgery and reveals that her accomplice is a person named Moriarty. John heads to where Andrew West’s body was discovered. Sherlock surprises him by revealing that he has been secretly investigating the case as well.Together they confront West’s fiance’s brother, and he confesses to accidentally killing him and stealing the missile plans. Sherlock retrieves the plans – however, he has no intentions of returning them to Mycroft…

Preview: Sherlock: The Great Game #5

SHERLOCK: THE GREAT GAME #5

Writer: Mark Gatiss
Artist: Jay.
Cover A: Tomm Coker
Cover B: Photo
Publisher: Titan Comics
FC – 46pp – $4.99 – On sale: December 6, 2017

The latest issue of the brilliant manga adaptation of the fanatically followed TV show, starring Benedict Cumberbatch (Doctor Strange) and Martin Freeman (The Hobbit).

Preview: Sherlock: The Great Game #4

SHERLOCK THE GREAT GAME #4

Writer/co-creator: Mark Gatiss
Co-creator: Steven Moffat
Art: Jay.
Cover A: Mark Buckingham
Cover B: Will Brooks
FC – 46pp – $4.99
On sale: November 8, 2017

Sherlock discovers the solution to Ian Monkford’s disappearance case. Upon announcing this, the second hostage is released. John suggests that the mysterious caller is deliberately designing a game for Sherlock. Inspector Lestrade consults with Sherlock and John on a new case involving the death of a reality TV star, even though he is unconvinced that it’s related to the bombings. Through deductive observation, Sherlock declares that she was in fact murdered, and con rms it’s related to the caller’s hostage game. After investigating the celebrity’s home, Sherlock reveals the murderer and the truth behind her death. Sherlock expects a call releasing the hostage, but something has changed…

Based on the TV series SHERLOCK, co-created by STEVEN MOFFAT & MARK GATISS, and adapting Episode Three:​ ​The Great Game.

Preview: Sherlock: The Great Game #3

Sherlock: The Great Game #3

Writer: Mark Gatiss
Artist: Jay.
FC – 46pp – $4.99

The latest issue of the brilliant manga adaptation of the fanatically followed TV show, starring Benedict Cumberbatch (Doctor Strange) and Martin Freeman (The Hobbit).

Preview: Sherlock: The Great Game #2

SHERLOCK: THE GREAT GAME #2

Co-creators: Steven Moffat, Mark Gatiss
Writer: Steve Thompson
Artist: Jay.
Cover A Jay.
Cover B Will Brooks Wraparound
Cover C: Steve Yeowell
Publisher: Titan Comics
FC – 47pp – $4.99 – On sale: Aug 9, 2017

Someone is causing trouble for Sherlock Holmes and John Watson – and innocent victims are caught in the middle…

A mysterious villain is setting a series of deadly puzzles for the crime-solving duo, and failure to solve each riddle is deadly… who is the villain and what is his link to Sherlock and John?

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