Astonishing X-Men Motion Comic (Gifted)
Animation by Marvel Knights
Written by Joss Whedon
Art by John Cassaday
I am a big fan of Joss Whedon's Astonishing X-Men and it was very interesting for me to see how it would look like if the whole medium was translated into a motion comic, with the photo-realisitic art of John Cassaday brought to life. So I quickly borrowed a DVD copy of its first comic book arc titled Gifted from one of my colleagues, went home and turned on the home theater set.
Though I already know what the whole premise of the story is - basically a "mutant cure" claimed to be created by Dr. Kavita Rau is exposed to the world and is causing unrest within the mutant community - I still wanted to see how the whole thing would work in a different form. Take note that reading a comic book is far more different than watching a movie and there is a unique experience reading a graphic novel which cannot be translated. That's why some comic book movie adaptations don't tend to work that well because there are a lot of things that were intended to work ONLY in the book's written pages.
So with that being said, watching the whole 6 chapters of this motion comic I would say was quite fun, and there's a lot of things I would like to point out in the next paragraphs:
First thing I've noticed is how the art was "tweaked" to a degree so that the motion guys could make these stagnant pieces of art into something that moves - even in a small scale - like lips moving, arms swaying, walking and things like that. Props to the Marvel "motioneers" who I bet spend hours and hours trying to make the best possible action sequences, which I admit, are good for the most part. Especially that first X-Men fight against a SWAT-team and Ord, Beast vs Wolverine, and Colossus KO'ing Ord to name a few.
The bad part is that that these characters look very awkward when walking. Really, they are like retarded puppets... or more like paper dolls. It wasn't the best scenes in the history of motion picture, but I was glad that they are only for a short time.
And since this is a motion comic, there's your good 'ol voice acting. I would say the voice actors did a great job with voicing these characters and they really bring justice to their dialogues. But then again, hearing all those comic book dialogues are different than reading them, because they tend to speak them so fast that you cannot understand what they're talking about. I wish they could have slowed it down a little bit so to capture the excitement and the exact "emotions" they are trying to convey. As I have said, there are just things that will only work in a comic book.
But all in all, it was refreshing thing to see despite the flaws. A new kind of "comicbook/cinematic" experience that could still be improved greatly and will be a great deal in the near future for comic book fans and non-fans alike.
Check out the trailer of the motion comic below courtesy of Marvel's Youtube Channel: