Thoughts on ‘The Dark Tower’?

So, this seems like as good a time as any to talk about this. What did you think of The Dark Tower issue? Did anyone actually go to a midnight signing? Was it worth the wait? Do you know any non-comics folk who wanted to know about it?

Here’s Stephen King talking about it to the Los Angeles Times.

I’ll reserve my opinion on the book for this week’s podcast, but that other stuff interests me, and I’d like to hear what people thought. Did anyone read all that prose at the back by King’s personal Dark Tower continuity expert, Robin Furth?

I will say, I would buy a Chuck Austen book about ponies if Jae Lee was drawing it.


  1. It was really good. It was my favorite book of the week.

  2. It was really good. Can’t wait for number 2. I didn’t go out at midnight (-8 degrees) but those that did I’m sure were not disappointed.

  3. I was asleep at midnight last night, so I didn’t go (that and my LCS is a Newbury comics, so they probably didn’t do it anyway) but I loved it, even not having read any of the others

  4. The book was really great. I was a little hesitant about it because I’m a big fan of the books and love them dearly. Peter David did a great job of capturing the tone of the book as well as the langauge that the characters use.

    In terms of continuity with the books, I’m a little curious how all of this is going to pan out. Out of the seven book series, this book picks up the first 10 pages of book one and then leaps to book four. Book four is the book that looks at Roland’s past, so maybe they’re going to do that first before they move it back up to the present.

    Not too sure. But the art is so supercalafragalisticexpialladocious it just may not matter.

    Does anyone know what the overall story plans are for this book? I’m interested to know if it’s going to play out the whole series’ story.

  5. i read it w/o reading the novels based on it. it was ok, but didnt live up to the hype for me. i’ll probably grab the next couple of issues and see where it goes before i add it to the pull list. bottom line: it was surprisingly good, but lets put away the anointing oils for now.

  6. Does anyone know what the overall story plans are for this book? I’m interested to know if it’s going to play out the whole series’ story.

    The rest of the miniseries (issues 2-7) will focus on the Roland/Susan Delgado story, which was the majority of Book 4: Wizard & Glass. They have said that future series may focus on other pieces of Roland’s past that were talked about but never explored in the actual books. I don’t think they are planning on actually adapting the books at all (other than this first series, which only adapts a portion of books 1 and 4). I am happy about that, as I would much rather read new stories than a rehash of ones I already know.

  7. I was quite annoyed by this book. The art was great, and I think that equal credit should go to Jae Lee and Richard Isanove for this – the digital colouring really lifted the pencilling from simply good, to amazing.

    Once I got over the art however, I was left with a very frustrating book. I have read the original Stephen King novel, and was fairly unimpressed by it, and this comic book left me with the same feeling. the storyline is very basic paint-by-numbers fantasy, albeit with the vaguely original twist of mixing with a wild western theme. This is not what irked me however, I enjoy fantasy novels, even when the plot is as familiar as the Dark Tower’s. What annoyed me was the script. I like Peter David, but the dialogue and narrative tone here seems extremely forced; PAD just throws in these fantasy/western colloquialisms without much thought and with seeming disregard for making the script an enjoyable read, making the dialogue and narrative disjointed and dull.

  8. a slight question for those who have read the books/know more than I do:
    does the phrase “if you can kennit” mean something along the lines of “if you can understand it?”

  9. You’ve got it right Deezer.

  10. You’ve got it right Deezer.

    I find this offensive on so many levels.

  11. Why?

  12. I’ve not only not read the Dark Tower book series, but I’ve also never read ANY of King’s work, though I have seen a few of the movies based off his writing.

    I though this was the best art I’d ever seen from Jae Lee, and the story was engaging enough for me to want to continue to pick up the book. I wish this Gunslinger Guidebook that Marvel was advertising was going to be available sooner than April since I’m not interested of the “world of Dark Tower”.

    Depending on my enjoyment of the rest of this mini-series, I can definitely see myself picking up the novels.

  13. Oh, also, as someone new to Dark Tower, I felt this was a really good introduction. I obviously can’t say whether or not this was satisfying if you’ve already read the books, but for me, it was able to stand on its own.

  14. I read the first four volumes of the Gunslinger. I really dug it, as I was reading it, but forgot a lot of it while waiting for the 5th book to come out. And now that they’re all out, I have about a billion other books that are before it.

    But I remember enjoying it. I’ll definitely check this out when it gets traded.

  15. Forgive me if this has been discussed already (or if it’s explained in the posted article, I’m not registered on the LA Times website), but I’m curious as to what King’s role is on this book? Is he an editor, creative consultant, or is it similar to having ‘Quentin Tarantino presents’ before the title of a film that the named director has little to no involvement in, just for the sake of name recognition? I guess it’s a little different in this sense, because they’re also using King’s intellectual property to tell stories that are incorporated into the overall narrative.

    I haven’t read any of the Dark Tower series of books, nor have I read the comic (I have my stuff mailed to me), but I was intrigued by the book because of Peter David and Jae Lee, not really King’s involvement because I don’t think he’s a particularly good author. I mean, there are plenty of comics based on other media properties that don’t have the input of the artist, so what does his involvement bring to the table?

    Sorry for the long-winded question.

  16. From what Joe Quesada said in San Deigo last year, it seems as if Stephen King plotted out the mini-series in a very detailed way.

  17. Thanks for clearing that up.

  18. I’ve read and re-read all 7 volumes plus both Concordances by Robin Fourth. My favorite book of the saga would be “The Drawing of the Three” and I feel that the last two volumes were a bit dissapointment, but I really dug the final and I think the “warning-pause” that Stephen King did right before the final pages was brilliant.

    So , I was in for a very serious disspointment and…. I was pleasently surprised, this issue was really great, my POW definately (I’m waiting for the HC of Smith’s Shazam), the art was superb, I liked that fact that this looks not to be a adaptation per se, but more like a in-depth look at the story.

    Telling Roland’s first Ka-tet story it’s a good starting point for everyone, anyone agree?

    I didn’t went to any midnight event, simply because I live in Mexico, would I live in the US or near the border? you could bet I would’ve been in line at midnight.

  19. I wanted to grab DT, but my shop didn’t get any copies. (They got Fell though.)

  20. Does anyone else get a John Cassaday vibe from the faces in this book?

  21. yeah totally

  22. I think Lee’s been around longer than Cassaday.

  23. I just finished reading it this morning – I’ll say the beginning narrative wasn’t great – it did seem too forced. But, once the story got kicked off I really enjoyed it. The artwork was very good and the extra material helped round the book out. I wasn’t going to buy issue #2 but now I think I will.

  24. I didn’t read this personally, but I was impressed when I went into my neighborhood Borders this weekend to see that they were pimping it like it owed them money. Big end cap display, the whole nine yards.

  25. I didn’t read this personally, but I was impressed when I went into my neighborhood Borders this weekend to see that they were pimping it like it owed them money. Big end cap display, the whole nine yards.

    That’s exactly what comics need! Too bad other comics aren’t getting to share that endcap with DT!

  26. On the podcast you guys asked what Jae Lee has been up to.

    He did pages for the Young Avengers Annual
    a while back and he also did illustrations for a Dracula volume.

  27. he also did illustrations for a Dracula volume

    One of my Christmas gifts. I’ve never read Dracula but now I will. The illos were nice, but there just wasn’t enough of them!

    John Byrne and Jae Lee had a great run on Namor years ago. I remember being bitterly disappointed that the last issue was drawn by a fill-in artist. Jae did a great long-haired body armor Namor.