Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Review: King Tiger

King Tiger is a character created by Dark Horse Comics back in the 90's when they launched a line of super-hero books and I was in college getting my Bachelor's Degree.  I remember it well because the premiere was drawn by one of my all-time favorite cartoonists, Paul Chadwick.  Paul's Concrete comic is my all-time favorite comic run of anything, and I hope he'll do more someday.  But I digress, what I mean to say is that Paul introduced me to Dark Horse Comics, the company. I then read King Tiger partly because Paul drew it.  And now, all these years later I bought King Tiger's first limited series.  And did I enjoy it?  Let me put it his way: it is probably the best comic I've read over the past year!

King Tiger is a martial art magician.  Kind of like a combination Brue Lee and Dr. Strange.  Unlike the Doctor, Tiger uses a lot of weapons in his fights, but they are enchanted weapons that rely on mystic as well as mundane strength.  The four-issue series does a good job introducing the reader to Tiger and his history and abilities through the eyes of his recently hired assistant/caddy Milo.  Milo is brave and loyal, but a complete novice to Tiger's world.  Like the typical reader.  The third main character is Tiger's girlfriend Rikki, who supplies Tiger's squad with a headquarters, repairs vehicles, and funds his world-saving missions.  It seems Rikki is terribly rich, which is convenient, but also works well in the context of  the story.

Writer Randy Stradley does a great job of telling the story, getting in all the introductory bits in a way that keeps the plot flowing, and giving each character a unique personality and "feel".  The story is VERY engaging, as the good guys are in constant peril and there are multiple twists in the plot.  Artist Doug Wheatley is just spectacular!  I spent as much time looking at the details in the artwork as I did reading the words on each page.  Somehow, Doug makes the most fantastic subject look extremely realistic.

Anyway, this comic is a definite A+ and I hope it is successful enough to warrant further series of even greater tales!  I'm only sorry I didn't get it read earlier so I could have completed this review a while ago.  But I'm pretty sure you can still order the series from Dark Horse or your local comic shop!  So go do it.  I'd love to hear the opinions of other who have read the series!

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