I have been fortunate enough to have become email friends with the creator of
Folino, I have also had the chance to do an interview with Chris, William Katt the
executive producer and JM Ringuet who did the bulk of the artwork for the
The history of this project is almost as fascinating as the film. It was a comic book that never made it to the end of the mini-series. Next it was a motion comic and for my money the only motion comic I ever saw that had a true feeling of making the book come alive with a cinematic flair. Finally the movie has been made and the graphic novel has been completed.
Call your comic store and demand they carry it or hunt it down on Ebay or do whatever you need to do to get this story or click on this link. The movie may never make it to a wide release so set up the searches to await the DVD, the story is that good.
I hate to do a review where I rehash the plot and bore you to tears, but it is a story of love, death, destruction and redemption. I love it because it uses all the great elements of film noir and then adds a twist by giving us a golden age type of super hero being the focus of the story. One of my favorite scenes is where
Sparks walks into the
police station and he says “he wants to report his murder”. A cliché to be
sure, but well done it is not about the cliché it is putting a story around it
that makes the cliché a great element of the story.
The story unfold and we get the origin of Sparks, the tough start, the move to the big city, the meeting of the love of his life and then it begins to unravel. We have a great bad guy, we have the man who pulls
Sparks out of the depths
of despair and gives him a life again. We have betrayals, double crosses,
additional reveals and the layers of this onion are peeled back. You have to
pay attention to the story and sometimes I had to flip back and forth and say “wait
a minute wasn’t so and so doing this and not that”. That’s what I love about
it, it is a rich story that is both complex and full or twists and turns and it
is also a simple story of someone trying to be the hero and of course against
all odds he ….well that would be telling.
I’m not going to lie I have been a fan of this material for a long time and I’m almost giddy to see it has come to full life as a graphic novel and the movie; I can’t wait to see the entire movie. I’m also thrilled to see the story completed as a graphic novel. Now due to various and at this time unimportant reasons the art was completed by Tyler Endicott.
Tyler did a good job, but the different artists
are not my preference for how a graphic novel should be done. It is not a
negative as much as it is an observation. Also the final cut had some
differences from what I read a few years back and while I was a little taken aback,
I believe the changes are for the best as a graphic novel is a different animal
from a serialized format. One of the biggest problems this industry has is
often presenting stories which work collected as chapters in a monthly book.
Few writers appreciate that a monthly book is not a graphic novel. Christopher
has shown great respect and intelligence in approaching every method of
presenting the story in a fashion that best suits the medium he is presenting
it in. The comic is different from the motion comic which is different from the
graphic novel which is different from the movie. I’m looking forward to the
If you couldn’t tell I think
Sparks is worth checking out as both a
graphic novel and a movie. My biggest hope is this movie gets enough traction
to open in a lot of theatres as I want people to see that the super hero genre
can be used in conjuncture with other types of story other then the straight
super hero stuff Iron Man, Avengers and the rest are giving us. Again not
knocking that material, I love it, but this story is just as cool in its own way.