September 16, 2007 was a sad day for fantasy fans. This was the day that acclaimed writer James Oliver Rigney Jr. passed away. The world knew him as Robert Jordan and we knew his work.
Despite his untimely, and obviously sad, passing his work lives one. His most famous series was the long running and legendary series The Wheel of Time, a series that has seen many adaptations from his written word. It has appeared as numerous video games, a D20 roleplaying book and even a film in the works. Dabel Brothers (and now Dynamite publishing) has decided to add to that with the release of the Wheel of Time comic series.
The books have been adapted to the comic format by Chuck Dixon. The experienced comic writer, known for such stories as Batman: Knighfall G.I. Joe: Reloaded, and creating the Birds of Prey team, translates the thick and deep book gracefully into the thin comic format.
The Eye of the World (EotW) is a long book that spans numerous pages, and heavily focuses on a handful of characters. Dixon is used to working with a large number of characters, his years within the Bat-family make sure of it, and it shows in the EotW adaptations. He is able to give each character the focuses they need so not to lose crucial development in the limited comic space. Dixon is also skilled at finding the natural breaks in the story to end each issue, leaving us with a nice hanger form month to month without it seeming forced.
The series has gone through two artists. The first, Chase Conley, was used during the first six issues, and the second, Andie Tong, has been the pencils for the series since.
Chase’s art uses soft line with small faces. This gives the character an animated feel, reminiscent of Bruce Timm, with a touch of realism and less defined chins. With Conley’s artistic skills you see Rand, a young boy on the cusp of manhood embarking on a quest his was forced to endure.
With Conley’s art you see Moirane as a sultry woman, with a lithe and ample body and supple curves. Egwene is drawn as an innocent farmer’s daughter, with a gentle face. Nynaeve, in contrast, is drawn with a firmer face born from hard work and leadership.
It was nice to see these looks, which were described over hundreds of words each, tackled so easily and accurately in a single panel.
The art undergoes a slight change with the change from Chase Conley to Andie Tong but not a drastic one. They two artist styles are very similar which makes the transition incredibly smooth.
Tong’s pencils lose some of the animated feel, replacing it with a more realistic approach. His art does lack in his distinction of the three boys. Aside from various slight alterations of each other, the boys share a great many details in their faces. They have the same eyes and nose, and similar chins.
The comic, on issue 11 as of June 2011, is a great addition to the Jordan-verse (can we call it that?) and due to the success we can expect more to come.
I owe it to Phillip Kindred Dick and Neil Gaiman that i am such a good english-talker and writer and since the late 1990 in which i discovered the Wheel of Time, I owe it to Robert Jordan, that i’m so good in other languages than german…! THANK 1000 Times Robert, yours Günther