Klaus and the Crisis in Xmasville-Some DC Equivalents
Three Decades Earlier
Klaus and the Crisis in Xmasville, released in late 2017, is the second one-shot in Grant Morrison’s Klaus series. This time set in August of 1985 as a family gets lost driving through Delaware, and one of the kids narrating as she remembers what transpired.
Upon entering Xmasville, a Christmas themed town with people dressed as Santa and somehow snowing, the family stops to make a call. As the narrator’s father talks to his mother, the family is kidnapped by the Santas. Worried about them, the grandmother, Kate, contacts Klaus with a magical flare gun he gave her long ago.
The Very, Not So, Subtle Soda Jab
Before Klaus arrives, the comic introduces the antagonists, a young man and his grandfather known as the Partridges. They use their soda company, the Pola-Cola Corporation, as a front for their wanting to grow richer through their own use of the Santa Claus image. This has led to conflicts with Klaus and becoming enemies.
This time, the Partridges are working with an alternate universe and darker version of Klaus. This dark Klaus plans to drain children’s essence and brainwash adults as mindless Santa-costumed slaves that will terrorize the world until a blue-costumed Santa, created by Pola, saves everyone and becomes adored.
Once Klaus and Lilli arrive in Xmasville, they meet the evil Klaus and are severally beaten due to his immense power. Klaus and Lilli are saved by someone using a teleporting orb and taken to a Batcave-esque facility, that is the home of Grandfather Frost. He’s based on the Russian version of Santa, and the two were saved by Snowmaiden, his granddaughter also inspired by Russian folklore.
Frost needs to take care of Lilli and mentions that two other versions of Santa Claus are busy fighting in the moon. Once healed, Klaus goes back to fight the dark Klaus with Snowmaiden’s help.
Returning to Xmasville, the two Klaus’s get into a rematch as Snowmaiden frees the Santa slaves and kids. During the fight, the Partridges escape knowing they will lose. Klaus and Snowmaiden defeat his evil counterpart as they get the kids and adults out of the town.
The narrator, now an adult in 2017, tells the events through a book she wrote. While at a book signing, she is given the same flare gun her grandmother had. She never sees Klaus, but keeps his gift in case Klaus is ever needed.
While Witch of Winter introduced the yearly anthology format, Xmasville perfected the concept. Unlike before, Grant Morrison was able to give us enough backstories and references to what has happened in the past without taking us out of this story.
Limiting the amount of information while also giving us flashbacks to Klaus’s struggle with Pola is the best improvement. This comic also best shows Morrison’s love for over the top stories as one can see through the obvious jab at Coke and using Frost as a metaphor for Batman due to his home’s aesthetic, while Klaus is a lot like Superman with Lilli as Krypto, and his counterpart looks and acts like Lobo.
Of course, there is still one huge issue that relates to the dialogue. It’s better here, but certain parts feel off and rely too much on exposition rather than letting some of the artwork speak.
Speaking of artwork, Dan Mora’s is always a delight as this time he adds darker images that rely on shadows. The design he does for Frost and Snowmaiden are fresh and unique.
Klaus and the Crisis in Xmasville is flawed but is otherwise fun, over the top, and improves on its predecessor.
You can get Klaus and the Crisis in Xmasville at Amazon.
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