The Oz / Wonderland Chronicles (BuyMeToys.com – Avery / Heying)
blurb on issue #3 Alice and Dorothy face off against the New Wicked Witch. But, even if they survive, they must find a way to Wonderland to stop the unstoppable — The Jabberwocky! The beast is making it’s way to Oz, but first it has to go through the middle realm — Earth! Available with covers from Joe Jusko and Glen Orbik.
I have been following this series for a few years now, an issue or two every year (the sad song of the self-publisher!). From 2005, they have published issues #0, 1, 2, 3 and a special spotlighting Jack Pumpkinhead and the Cheshire Cat.
The Wicked Witch puts her plans in motion, as the Gnome King makes his way to Wonderland. Jack Pumkinhead is sent from the Oz Resistance to stop the Gnome King, but he may be too late. Meanwhile Alice (from Wonderland) and her roommates have no idea their lives are about to changed forever.
The thing about this series that makes it a gem, could also be an obstacle for some. It is obvious that the authors, Ben Casey and Casey Heying love their children’s literature.
There are so many send-ups, easter eggs and just small treasures in these issue for the fans of Oz books, Wonderland, Narnia, and other classic children’s lit. I really enjoy them and then googling the ones that I don’t know but I can see that being a distraction to those who don’t catch all the tidbits. While I have enjoyed re-reading the entire series this Summer, another thing that is working against the creators to have it coming out so slow. I pick up the new issues every year at Wizard World Chicago, but I forget about it in the 12 months in between. Then I see their booth and go “oh yeah, got to get that!”.
The story is very detailed and a joy to dissect. I could see this doing real well as a written traditional novel also. The art in the five books is a bit more sporadic, jumping from awesome splash pages and frames filled with gorgeous detail to close ups and scenes that look just sort of thrown together. Overall a great book, just a long ride. You can tell that some of the big boys love their books, the cover artist list includes Greg Horn, Joe Jusko, Glen Orbik, Boris Vallejo and Alex Ross for issue #4.
Series Grade: B+