Review - Oz #1

"Dorothy are in big trouble."

Truer words have never been spoken, especially when it comes to Dorothy. The fabled lass from Kansas lives a rustic life of farms and family until a tornado sweeps her up and into Oz. Zenescope doesn't stray too far from that recounting in Oz #1, with a few exceptions.

The issue is written by Joe Brusha, with pencils by Rolando de Sessa, inks by Glauber Matos, colors by Grostieta and letters by Jim Campbell.

Dorothy has a handle on the farm, working daily to ensure that everything runs smoothly. That includes saving clumsy farmhands from violent pet bulls and confrontations with witches. That's right: witches. Since this is a story based in the Oz universe, then you know that Dorothy's got Toto and a vengeful witch she's squaring off against. The issue ends where it should, only Dorothy isn't confronted by relatively friendly Munchkins.

Brusha's story is pretty light on dialogue, moving along very quickly with narration points in order to get the reader up to speed. Since it's not an entirely new series, the Brusha doesn't have to do too much to let the reader know about Dorothy. He does manage to work in Toto, giving him a slightly new origin (and size) to better serve the upcoming story as a whole. Dorothy is pitched as all-American hero, likely to poise her to go toe-to-toe with the other heavy hitters of the Zenescope universe.

There are some interesting panels in the issue. Dorothy is the star of the show, but de Sessa strives to showcase other facets of the book. The presume Wicked Witch of the West looks like a cross between Jessica Rabbit and Sofia Vergara, almost to the point that her appearance distracts the reader from the story. There's a strong two-page layout of the tornado whipping up the house with a few inset panels that's very well done, evidencing a lot of time spent on it to make it grand.

Oz #1 isn't a brand "new" series per se, but it does do everything the Zenescope way. It moves very briskly to get Dorothy to Oz which is likely where the story will really start to deviate from the traditional tale as most people know it. Why the Witch is willing to go through Dorothy to get what she's after remains to be seen and sets the series up to really explore the wonderful world of Oz.

Oz #1 is in stores July 3 with interiors below.