Dollhouse (One shot) (Dark Horse www.darkhorse.com)
Based on the TV series and the comic written by Jed Wheddon I’ve come to this storyline cold and boy is it a rush to read! In the future our cities have ‘Dollhouses,’ a client orientated companionship company, where people become empty vessels effectively having their memories wiped clean and ready for imprinting as ‘Dolls,’ with computer enhanced personalities and skills downloaded at the buyers request. Very futuristic and Phillip K Dick influenced, this comic (and I presume) TV series ponders that if this technology were that simple to use, then what would happen if you corrupted that process, re- imagining a world where such a simple process of wiping minds and uploading personalities could go viral? Say, what if you could wipe someone’s mind over the phone? Then implant a new agenda instantly? The result? Omega Man and Romero influenced city wide carnage! Mobs of roving killing machines with no known agenda but violence and chaos. Of course there are survivors, but how long will they last and what happened to everyone else? This one shot gives you a simple taster of what’s to follow and as a preamble it knows its influences, it knows its inspiration and decides to play with its own genre limitations, such as trust no-one and the importance of staying on the move. With a simple shock twist at the end this is a great way to kick off this series which has a great potential to run and run. With such an over-riding mystery of who started this viral phone call killing spree (probably best saved as an unanswerable mystery in the way the Walking Dead has done) the fight for survival should be an interesting one. Having said that with such a clear technophobe plot line perhaps this series will only run as far as its mystery is answered and cured. Best get in to it now before everyone else starts the theory machine. Alex
Dollhouse (One Shot) (Dark Horse www.darkhorse.com)
The first thing that went through my head while reading this was that it was all very familiar. The phones making people crazy, a few desperate survivors, lots of death and destruction. Then it hit me, me this was Cell (Stephen King) all over again. Take away the fact that this isn’t really an original story (but then again nowadays what is), and this is actually the start of something very good. There’s enough action to leave you wanting more and the end sets you up perfectly for the next issue. There’s not much character back story at this point but with having to set the scene there’s not a lot of time to really do any development. You meet all those who appear to be the central characters and Trevor, who I think could be pivitol to the story. The artwork is exactly what you expect from Dark Horse, that is dark, gritty and capturing the atmosphere beautifully. I was never a fan of the TV series and to be honest I probably won’t be a fan of the graphic novels, but it’s not a bad read and it’s something that definitely speeds up and passes the time… Will.