Power of the Dark Crystal Vol. 1 by Simon Spurrier(Writer) & Kelly and Nichole Matthews (Illustrators)
Genre: Graphic Novel
TOTAL RATING: 3.8 STARS
An official sequel to Jim Henson’s cult classic fantasy film The Dark Crystal.
Years have passed since the Dark Crystal was healed and peace was restored on Thra. Though Jen and Kira have ruled as King and Queen, they have become distracted by power. The planet is sick and those on the surface of Thra are not the only ones effected. A mysterious race of creatures called Firelings live in a realm near the planet’s core, hidden from the Gelfling and their kingdom. A young Fireling named Thurma is tasked with stealing a shard of the Crystal to restore power to her world. Along the way she’ll befriend the young Gelfling Kensho, conjure the Skeksis and Mystics, and embark on one incredible adventure.
For true Dark Crystal fans, the official sequel to the 1982 film is a story straight from the heart of Jim Henson’s world of Thra. The story follows a new creature – Thurma, the fireling – who navigates through the strange above ground world because hers is dying. IN the first issue we learn a little about the changes that have occurred to Thra since the end of the movie. In the book, it states it’s been roughly a 100 Trine or years since the events of the movie and there’s some considerable easter eggs which link the two stories up. Jen and Kira are still about, though as aged and almost diety like figures for this new era of Gelflin-kind. Mother Aughra is also on had, but as usual makes about as little sense as a jellied tea set on the bridge of the USS Enterprise… weird right?
Anyway, thanks to the discover of the firelings and Thurma’s need to heal her subterranean version of Thra, she takes desperate measures and breaks the crystal just as before in the hopes that a sliver of the great crystal might save her and her people from destruction.
This of course causes considerable repercussions and the broken crystal leads to the return of the Skeksis.
Overall, I felt the story was a little reused and dry. The addition of the firelings was good as another Gelfling story would have not made sense, but at the same time having Jen and Kira about links it so heaviily to the film it’s hard to credit the Power of the Dark Crystal as it’s own property. Added to this the random way that the Skeksis (and Mystics) return just because the crystal was broken does ruin it for me. It seems like they were brought back the same way movie franchises use references to old characters, though really the Skeksis do very little to take advantage of the situation and are hardly antagonist at all, beyond the Chamberlain’s hunt for the shard – again which doesn’t make much sense beyond “we needed a baddie and he’s an iconic one from our series.”
A decent addition for Dark Cyrstal fans but hardly going to bring in new fans to the world of Thra.