What I Remember:
These books were special to me. My dad brought them home from work. During the 80s and early 90s he worked in import/export for Columbia Pictures and would bring a lot of promotional materials home from work, mostly t-shirts and a few posters. When Ghostbusters II came out my dad brought home everything he could get his soundtracks, a bus stop-sized poster for my room and The Real Ghostbusters Starring in Ghostbusters II issues #1-3!
Lately, the film has gotten a lot of slack for not being as good as the first film, which it isn't. It doesn't mean it is a bad film. If the movie still entertains you and makes you laugh, it's done it's job. Let's see how the comic book adaptation does its job.
The Real Ghostbusters Starring in Ghostbusters II issues #1-3
Adaptation: James Van Hise
Penciler: John Tobias
Inker: Rich Rankin
Lettering: Suzanne Dechnik
Painted Colors: Katherine Llewellyn
Art Director: Michele Mach
Editor In Chief: Tony Caputo
Publisher: Now Comics
Cover Price: $1.95
Re-Collection Price: Original Copy
Ghostbusters II happens. Vigo the Carpathian manifests himself in a portrait in the museum that Dana Barrett works at. He's looking for a new host to lead him into the new millennium. He feeds of the negative energy that comes from living in New York City in the 1980s and it’s up to the Ghostbusters to stop him. If you haven’t seen the movie go out and see it.
Part one, entitled the “Together Again for the First Time,” covers from the beginning of the movie through the trial scene with the Scoleri Brothers.
Part II, entitled “The Slime of Their Lives,” covers the reformation of the team until the guys in the tunnel.
Part III is the climax of the film featuring the kidnapping of Oscar and his rescue by the Ghostbusters.
What strikes me most about this series, as someone who’s seen the movie probably hundreds of times, is that this was obviously taken from the script and not done after shooting.
The Ghostbusters movies are heavy on the improv and many of the jokes have been reworked to make them as funny as possible. In the first issue some examples include when Peter meets Oscar, he doesn’t mention that the kid was named after a weiner and in court is missing the “Do, Ray, Egon!” joke when powering up the proton packs.
It looks like Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis and Rick Moranis, and to some extent Peter MacNicol, who played Yanosz were given way more leeway to work out their lines on set than other cast members. Some of the better jokes in the film seem to have been done on the fly, which speaks to the ability of the original cast.
The comic adaptation leaves shows us scenes cut from the film. In the movie when they are examining the restoration room at the museum, Ray is mesmerized by the painting until Winston snaps him out of it. Nothing comes of it until Ray is possessed at the very end of the film by Vigo.
However, in issue two, Ray immediately possessed by Vigo, speeding in Ecto 1 and crashing the car into a tree, trying to kill everyone. The only thing that stops him is that Winston punches him.
There’s also another scene where Louis suits up at the Firehouse, attempting to capture Slimer on his own. He’s kept from destroying the place when Janine asks him to babysit with her that night. In the movie she asks when they’re leaving work. Leaving Louis to suit up in the third act worked much better than the original script.
Continued After Ad:
If you’re as big of a Ghostbusters fan as I am this series is worth getting because you enjoy everything Ghostbusters.
It’s also interesting if you’re interested in the movie making process. I loved seeing how the original script compares to the version we saw on screen. What jokes were ad-libbed and what was cut. It’s amazing how many jokes made the film that weren’t in the script. It shows amazing trust in the cast to find what’s funny on set and hope that it works.
If you can get these issues or in the trades you should get them.
We go a little off the beaten path with Robin Annual #4 from 1995! The origin of comics most famous sidekick is updated for the 1990s. See you in seven!