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TWILIGHT ZONE VOLUME 2 Review: Brilliantly Carrying on Serling’s Legacy

The ultimate sacrifice: While most just nod their heads in agreement without much introspection to the phrase, others weigh its full meaning in the understanding that we are all but flesh and bones, not long bound for this world. It’s a thought that evokes a wide array of responses and cognition many struggle with throughout their lives. It’s with that expression we ask: Would you give your life for another’s?

While many of us would like to believe we would inevitably pay the ultimate price if the choice arose, the honest truth is that most would only stand idly by; forever regretting the lackadaisical and cowardly response made, however human it may be. In that, Dynamite‘s Twilight Zone Volume 2 addresses commonplace morality, choices, and whether you’d be a player or a passerby if the situation emerged.

Story

Diana Westby is just another average New Yorker; another average person. Struggling to get by in a dead-end job, balancing day-to-days, and finally giving up on achieving something more from life and submitting to an average, hopeless, boring existence. With no furthered education and a lack of real-world job skills, Diana makes ends meet working in a busy Manhattan coffee shop, where, one day, a man presents her with a tip. But of course, since we’re in the Twilight Zone, it isn’t just any ordinary tip, but an ancient gold coin carrying a long forgotten curse, and the ability to foresee events and even read minds. Inevitably, Diana is faced with a choice: Stand idly by and watch as thousands, perhaps millions, perish and suffer as she saves herself, or pay the ultimate price.

Thankfully, this isn’t a rehashing of that garbage ’80s / early 2000’s rendition of the Twilight Zone. As a longtime fan of the original series, nothing comes close to the original’s charm and intelligence. However, TZ writer J. Michael Straczynski (Superman: Earth One, Before Watchmen) somehow manages to capture the feel, pacing, and narrative that is so hard to embody, perfectly.

As you read through the story’s beginning narrative, you’ll begin hearing the words bouncing around your head in Serling’s distinctively iconic voice. It isn’t just through expected placement, though, but through Straczynski’s talented writing that perfectly harmonizes Serling’s narrative style; and it doesn’t stop there. Throughout the story, the pacing, dialogue, and banter between characters all matches the classic tone of the series. Although the comic has a modern-day setting, the location, characters, and moral all evoke that iconic feel.

In the end, it may not be on the same level as the original series entirely, but it’s definitely the closest we’ve come to that magic in nearly 50 years.

Courtesy: Dynamite Entertainment

Courtesy: Dynamite Entertainment

Art

Recently, I’ve had a bad deal of luck in finding enjoyable, original, or talented comic artists in my reviews. Remember: Half the reason to read comics in the first place is for the art — at least in my opinion. Thankfully, Francesco Francavilla (Detective Comics, The Black Beetle) is a phenomenal artist and an asset to this series. Every detail, from shading to coloring, vividly pops from the page.

You know you’ve stumbled upon a fantastic artist’s work when you stop reading for a moment just to soak in the details on a single page. One page in particular, depicting a dark, rainy night along the city’s street, was the first time in a long time that I stopped to really appreciate all the little immaculate details on a comic book page. For that alone, TZ‘s art isn’t something I’ll soon forget.

Overall

As a lifelong fan of the series who credits a large amount of writing influence on the classic show, this wasn’t a series I could pass up. However, as almost every attempt to recreate the original series’ feel has fallen laughably short, it was one I continuously passed over for close to six months. Thankfully, I finally did end up picking it up — obviously — and enjoyed every minute of it.

Although it might not be perfect, it delivers the full Twilight Zone experience, complete with a twist / morality lesson, and is hands down the best adaptation made in the last 50 years. A worthwhile read for any series fan, or anyone disappointed by an M. Night movie ending post-Sixth Sense.

4 out of 5 stars

4 out of 5 stars

Cover image via

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Categories: Comic Reviews

Author:Jen

Founder, Editor-in-Chief at Another Castle | Twitter: @ComradeJen

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