Virgin Comics #0

Posted: Tuesday, March 27, 2007
By: Steve Saville

Cover of Virgin Comics #0 Creator(s): Shekhar Kapur, Deepak Chopra, Siddharth Kotian, Mukesh Singh, Shamik Dasgupta, Abhishek Singh
Publishers: Virgin Comics
From: USA
Price: Free

This review is quite possibly redundant by now because the comics that it previews are now well into their run and readily accessible through comic shops. This preview comic introduces two of those characters who have since been developed in their own titles.

Both are introduced in their own tale and both draw heavily on Indian mythology and religion. In fact it is the rich indigenous narratives of the Indian sub continent that provide the material for all of the comics that have emerged from the recently unleashed Virgin comics.

This in itself is not a new concept and there may be those of us who remember Rogan Gosh from the ill-fated British comic, “Revolver.” Krishna has featured in a variety of Indian comics as have other Indian deities and mythological characters. In fact the Indian comic has a history of weaving their traditional tales and the comic format together into an interesting indigenous entity.

Virgin Comics obviously plan to continue that tradition but in doing so they have added a strikingly modern and futuristic element thereby hopefully reaching a new and international audience.

The first preview features Devi a reinvention of one of the goddess myths of Asia. A character who treads the narrow path between the divine and the diabolical this cool heroine has returned to present day India to deal to the perpetrators of some horrific crimes. The art work is stunning, almost European in appearance but the iconography and symbolism are unmistakingly Indian. A bleak and violent tale that promises much.

The second story features the mythological character Ramayan. The art work here is initially complex to the point of being almost over powering, visually stunning, this comic starts with real impact and power. Once again it is a tale of violence, contemporary in feel but tempered with Indian symbolism and themes.

Care has to be taken when reinventing characters that are so important for so many people, I must say that the creators seem to be fully aware of this and have taken pains to present us with interesting engrossing characters whilst showing respect for their origins.

Virgin Comics have taken on some epic tales that are deep rooted in mysticism and history, it is an ambitious project but if this preview is anything to go by it is an ambition that they are fully capable of realising.

In a Word: Epic.

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