Based on the 1965 novel by Sol Yurick, "The Warriors" was a 1979 film by director Walter Hill that told the tale of a Coney Island, NY street gang who must literally fight for their lives to get home after being framed for the murder of rival group's leader who had been trying to unify all of New York City's gangs into a single unstoppable army. 20 years later, Atlanta-based publishing company, Dabel Brothers, have released the first "official movie adaptation" of the cult classic.
I wish they hadn't.
Maybe I was hoping for too much because of how much I love the movie but this comic contained nothing that might enhance my personal experience with the subject matter. The pace is rushed. The opportunity to add anything to the narrative is thrown away as writer David Atchison barrels through opening 20 minutes of the film in 23 pages. This probably has a lot to do with the series being limited to five issues. Given that caveat, it's much harder to villify Atchison. The art, however, borders on dreadful. With pencils and inks by Chris Dibari with colors by Kieran Oats, the characters, although all recognizable to me due to dozens of viewings of the film, all come off as poorly drawn charicatures. The feels like it's comprised of poorly selected storyboard illustrations.
Here's my disappointment in a nutshell: the potential audience for this comic book is almost certainly exclusive to people who have already seen the movie. If you want them to buy a comic adaptation of this movie, you need to give them something more than they are already getting from the dvd sitting on their shelf. A prefect example of this is the classic National Public Radio adaptation of the original Star Wars trilogy into a series of radio plays which included a plethora of material that was cut from the films plus extra material specific to that production.
Walter Hill envisioned The Warriors as a visual comic book presented in chapters with a splash page effect introducing each new segment of the film. A studio-chosen release date and limited budget kept Hill from exploring the idea. What excuse do Dabel Brothers have for not even attempting to improve on the movie with this comic book?