Friday, August 3, 2012

Planet of the Apes Annual #1

Written by Darryl Gregory, Corinna Bechko, Jeff Parker, and Gabriel Hardman
Art by Carlos Magno, John Lucas, Benjamin Dewey, and Gabriel Hardman

Last week Darryl Gregory and Carlos Magno's Planet of the Apes series ended without resolving everything in the story, but they are already revisiting those characters in this Annual, which has a prequel to their epic.  In this story, Sully, the eventual Mayor of the humans, and Alaya, the future Voice of the ape city of Mak, are still young girls and sisters, each adopted by the Lawgiver.  In a story reminiscent of the school desegregations that happened during the Civil Rights Movement in the States, Sully attends her first day of school with apes.  This story nicely underscores why Gegory's series has been so good - he finds parallels between human history and current events and how those same stories would play out in a PotA society.

The second story is by Corinna Bechko (co-writer of the upcoming Cataclysm series) and John Lucas.  It's a cute take on the standard 'boy and his dog' story.  Lucas's art reminds me a little of Mike Ploog's.

Jeff Parker is the only writer here new to the Apes universe, and he turns in a cool little story about life on the fringes of Ape civilization, where an outpost has developed its own rules and forms of entertainment.  Cool stuff, with terrific art by Benjamin Dewey, an artist I'm not familiar with.

To close off the comic, Gabriel Hardman gives us a prequel to his and Bechko's 'Betrayal' and 'Exile' series, featuring the young gorilla soldier Aleron, who would eventually become a celebrated general and lawyer, before becoming an exile.  This story shows us how Aleron lost his eye, and the beginning of his disenchantment with the way Ape society was run.  It's nice to see Hardman drawing his own stories again.

If you have been on the fence about Boom's Planet of the Apes stuff, I suggest you use this as a sampler to see what the two main series have been like.  You won't be disappointed.

No comments: