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Subj: Glad to hear it....
Posted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 at 10:19:47 am EDT
Reply Subj: Re: Opinions on Sleepwalker?
Posted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 at 02:53:59 am EDT
> Judging by the posts below, it would seem that I'm in the minority here -- but I really enjoyed Sleepwalker. It was actually the first and last comic book series I got a mail-in subscription to and I still have the complete series (along with the Holiday Special and Sleepwalker's later appearances by Kirkman in Epic #1 and Marvel Team-Up)
I'm only missing issues #18, and #30-32. Aaarggh!
> Aside from a very original concept, the book had a lot of characters I could sympathize with -- I thought Rick made a very interesting foil for Sleepwalker and gave an interesting twist to the traditional "secret identity" gimmick. Sleepwalker also had the tragic hero bit going for him (a lost ET trying to help people despite the fact that they were terrified of him -- kind of surprised nobody mentioned the word "mutant" to him though). Even Rick's dog Rambo made a good impression on me -- I loved the way he woke Rick up every morning.
> To me the book started going downhill when they did the whole "invasion of the Sleepwalkers" storyline. Although the stories Budiansky told had a unique SF-fantasy feel to them, I think the book would have been better served if they focused more on the book's characters and their day-to-day problems. One of the more intriguing storylines had Sleepwalker develop an addiction to a certain type of light -- I would have liked to have seen his recovery explored in more detail. Rick and Alyssa's relationship could have been delved into more deeply (despite being attractive, Alyssa never really received a lot of character development). Budiansky also set Rick up with an interesting work/personal life -- Rick was on the basketball team, a tutor, a handyman, and an up-and-coming filmmaker. Any of these aspects of his life (and the complications and advantages Sleepwalker could have brought to them) could have been explored -- but never were.
Well, Budiansky did touch on them briefly here and there, but you're right. I personally think the six-part arc where Sleepwalker and Rick swapped bodies went on too long (although it did give the Macendale Hobgoblin one of his very few wins, even if he had 8-Ball there to help him out), although at least at the start it gave some great development to 8-Ball.
On the other hand, the major, overarcing plot of the book, the one most readers seem to have ignored, came up around that time.
> Honestly, I think the character of Sleepwalker and his supporting cast has a lot of potential -- and could still make an excellent comic book for today. Considering that even Squirrel Girl is starting to get some respect and a growing fan base, I wouldn't discount the possibility of another Sleepwalker book.
Well, that's sort of what I'm doing-writing an Ultimate Sleepwalker, at least. I've changed some of the details (most notably on some of the villains considered "lame", such as turning the Chain Gang into a delusional, messed-up war veteran with split personality disorder, rather than the Four Stooges), but some of the other basic themes are the same.
And I've seen a surprising number of posts here and there on various forums and blogs from other closet Sleepwalker fans, who either clamour for an Ultimate or MAX Sleepwalker release, or otherwise enjoyed the series.
I'd personally love to see what someone like Alan Moore, J.M. DeMatteis or Frank Miller could do with Sleepwalker-I personally disagree with Robert Kirkman that making Sleepy into a "brooding vigilante" ruins some of Budiansky's original concept. As a matter of fact, there were some pretty dark moments in Budiansky's original series as well-just look at the issues featuring Psyko, for example, and tell me that it was campy, light-hearted fun.
Besides which, in his Marvel Team-Up series, Kirkman messed up one of the most basic aspects of Sleepwalker's physiology-his race doesn't sleep! It kept him from being charmed by Lullaby, and was the whole reason Nightmare invaded Rick Sheridan's mind, plotting to drive Sleepwalker mad and then give Nightmare access to the Sleepwalker race's minds, which he'd never been able to do given that they didn't sleep.
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