Charmed Comic Review, Issue #1

Back in March, when the "Charmed" comic was announced, I wrote a post titled "'Charmed' Comic? Count me... out?". Well, not to go all "Godfather III" on you, but just when I thought I was out... they pull me back in.

Actually, to be entirely honest, Zenescope pulled me back last month with the "Charmed #0" preview issue that recapped the series and set up the characters for this comic. The preview didn't contain any surprises, but I figured it wouldn't be fair to write off this book, based on what had been one of my favorite TV series, without giving it a shot first.

The first issue of the series isn't bad. First of all, there's no Billie, so that eliminates the largest problem with Season 8. Secondly, it's set a reasonable amount of time after the series finale, so there have been some changes to the characters (Phoebe and Coop now have a child, and Piper and Leo are on kid #3). The time jump works well particularly with Phoebe and Coop, who weren't really a couple until the series finale. I'd much rather just see them together than have to suffer through any dating hijinks (I got enough of those stories in the last three seasons of the show). Overall, the first issue establishes the day-to-day difficulties The Charmed Ones have dealing with family/work life, while also introducing a pair of demons who seem to be hell bent on re-establishing the underworld (pun fully intended).

I never got the sense that the two demonic villains introduced were anything more than low-level demons with serious ambition, and I don't see exactly how they're going to pose a challenge to The Charmed Ones, unless Piper, Phoebe and Paige are woefully out of practice, but that could easily change in future issues. It's not like they've laid out all the cards regarding these demons, so I'll give writer Paul Ruditis the benefit of the doubt here.

As for the artwork, Dave Hoover's style isn't normally what I'd pick up, but it's not bad. He does a great job capturing Alyssa Milano (Phoebe) and Holly Marie Combs (Piper), but at no point did I get a Rose McGowan vibe from his Paige. Also, maybe it's just married life, but Phoebe is wearing way more clothing than I think we ever saw her wear on the show.

Overall, this was actually a solid first effort for the "Charmed" comic, and wasn't as disappointing as I'd feared. I'm still a little worried about what's going to happen when The Charmed Ones actually face off with a demon (rather than the magic of their out-of-control kids), but for now the series is worth the $3.50 a month for "Charmed" fans.

Grade: B

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#0, The Sourcebook
Charmed #1
Charmed Lives
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#2, No Rest For The Wicca