Dynamite Entertainment 2016
Written by Corinna Bechko
Illustrated by Roberto Castro
Coloured by Alex Guimaraes
Lettered by Simon Bowland
This is another perfect example of why I love Dynamite. In a world where capes and powers rule it’s easy to forget characters like these. Sure they have their niche audiences but it’s titles like this one who use creators like these that get them back into the forefront and minds of audiences and remind us how good they really are. Characters like Tarzan and Sheena were trailblazers and it’s nice to see them remembered, honoured and used in such great ways.
I’ll be the first to admit that when I was younger I never the saw the appeal of either Tarzan or Sheena, who coincidentally had the first female solo series ever published. To my younger self I wasn’t concerned about the past only the future and with age comes wisdom and seeing how these characters can still applied to today’s world is pretty amazing in itself and what Corinna does with them in this introduction well it’s an eye opener.
Roberto and Alex really do the interiors so much justice. I love that Sheena is this gorgeous woman of the jungle and yet her attire while somewhat of a distraction is more representative of who she is rather than a sexual statement. She’s smart, strong and powerful not to mention determined and it’s this they are able to bring forth on the pages. Also the use of panels on the page to keep the story flowing with all the backgrounds and scenery around them so well done it’s a pleasure to get swept up in a place where concrete and steel are the enemy rather than the norm.
I think it’s a smart move to start with Sheena here. Tarzan is so much more prevalent in pop culture than she is and this gives us a chance to get know her before the two meet. Corinna kind of makes her this modern day eco-warrior protecting the land from those who want to tear it down and “rape the land” as it were. There are villages, people and wildlife native to the area that she’s the champion of and seeing her in action well it’s refreshing. With her animal companions at her side and simple bow and arrow going up against guns and the like showcase her bravery and her skills.
I adore the idea of the power of the land and the temple in question. It’s a nice way to get her where she needs to be in order to meet Tarzan and keep things sensible, in a comic way of life.
The brief moment we get to see Tarzan here really does help with his juxtaposition between Africa and England. Part of both belonging to neither, well that’s how I see him anyway.
There’s something almost romantic about this story and the idea behind these characters in how they approach life. I can’t wait to see how this continues to grow and evolve and the reason that Sheena finds herself where she currently is.