Zenescope Entertainment 2016
Written by Joe Tyler
Illustrated by Carlos Granda
Coloured by Jorge Cortes
Lettered by Fabio Amelia
For decades the U.S. Government has covered up the existence of dozens of species of dangerous creatures that have been captured over the years. After building a small, secretive city on a remote island in the Pacific, these monsters were transported there to be studied. In 2012, disaster struck and the island was evacuated. The mercenaries come face to face with Xorn’s race of highly skilled warriors and as tensions flare, their mutual disdain for the Elf Queen allows for the two sides to bond. Xorn reluctantly agrees to help Kelsey and Charles find what they need. But little does the group know it’s walking directly into an ambush.
Halfway through this run and suddenly Joe is shaking things up as he reveals some monster characterization shakeups. I’m mightily impressed with how this story has been going and suddenly with what we see this issue i’m more intrigued than ever by the possibility that this island and it’s inhabitants not only never get off but the island survives somehow. Not only for a sequel because well there’s so much here that still needs exploration but because well gosh darned the ramifications for the rest of the world.
How this issue opened up surprised the heck out of me, in a good way. Xorn showing that he’s not at home with either the humans or his own people any longer was a great way to go. Carlos and Jorge really do a spectacular job with the interiors here as well. The attention to detail and use of the pages and backgrounds really capture the precise feelings the reader needs.
The conversation between Harcourt and General Chase gives me hope that not all is well with destroying this island. Something is going to happen here that we won’t expect and I can’t wait to see if i’m right on that note. Plus I mean c’mon two factions vying for control after a huge mishap, after a huge mishap yeah that’s a showdown that needs to be seen. Plus the carnage and loss of life thanks to the island's denizens well that’s just an added bonus.
We’ve got two more issues to see how Kelsey and Merrick are going to play things out and in the meantime it isn’t like the Elf Queen isn’t planning her own exit strategy. Charles is a wildcard here I mean it’s been five years since he’s seen Kelsey and they’ve not exactly had a warm reunion as both seem to be keeping some really big secrets from each other. The characterization here is incredible as we see how they all are handling one problem after another being thrown at them as if from a ball machine, think batting or tennis practice. Gosh there’s one person here in particular who’s evolving character is just extremely extreme and it’s just a huge wow factor.
I have to say the way the story flows through the interior artwork is superbly done. It gives off that vibe of mixing Jurassic Park and Alien as you have no idea what is going to come after you next. Plus with all the natural camouflage the scenery provides they manage to bring tension to a whole new level.
Zenescope’s storytelling ability is at it’s highest point right now and if this is the look of the future than we’re in for more surprises, chills and thrills than ever before!