Monday, July 20, 2015

Where Monsters Dwell #3

   Surely one of the most offbeat titles to spin out of Secret Wars has to be Where Monsters Dwell, a revival of the title of a reprint comic, which drops the World War I pilot, the Phantom Eagle, into a world of prehistoric menace.

   Of course, since it's written by Garth Ennis, it's a combination of dark humor, violence, unexpected twists and gruesome danger.

   Oh, and the "hero" is now a jerk.

   The story is straightforward enough - it has Karl Kaufmann flying a beautiful passenger, Clemmie Franklin-Cox, to meet her husband - but the plane is caught up in a strange storm and they find themselves in a world of dinosaurs and savages.

   They seem to have landed in a place of safety - a fortress filled with beautiful, scantily-clad Amazon women. Karl thinks he's landed in paradise - but he quickly finds it's more like a nightmare.

   Can he escape intact? Does he want to?

   It's a surprisingly adult take on the classic story, and Karl's cliffhanger fate I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy. With violence threatened (of the most, uh, adult nature), this really isn't a comic for kids.

   The art is terrific, as Russ Braun brings this prehistoric world to life, and his female characters - and monsters - are worthy of the ones on the cover by Frank Cho.

   I'm not crazy about the character assassination of the Phantom Eagle, but if you can get past that, this is fun in a low-budget drive-in movie kinda way.

Grade: A-


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