American Mythology Productions 2017
Created by James Kuhoric
Written by S.A. Check
Illustrated by Scottie Watson
Coloured by Emmanuel Ordaz Torres
Lettered by Natalie Jane
More terrifying that a hurricane of flying sharks! More bone chilling than an invasion of giant snow scorpions! And more destructive than gargantuan slithering snakes throwing down! Erupting from the very Earth comes an unimaginable threat - giant lava breathing dinosaurs! Some horrors can't be unseen and the terror of this schlockfest will leave you smoldering. Join the refuges escaping the scorching vengeance of the Volcanosaurus!
One of the thinks I love about American Mythology is that they have no issues doing something along those serious lines of hard storytelling and mixing it with something that would a SyFy Channel movie of the week. Sometimes in life we want escapism, we want to forget our troubles for a while and just enjoy something off the beaten path that's just so not possibly true that we're entertained fully. That's what they can provide and I absolutely love it! This is so utterly campy and cliché but so much gosh darned fun to boot!
So the opening of this series kind of introduces us to what's going to happen here. Way back in dinosaur times what we call Mount Saint Helens exploded and changed the dinosaurs forever. Wiping out what they were and creating something brand new. So why hasn't anyone reported seeing these dinosaurs roaming around all this time? For that answer you have to read the story but I like how it makes sense at it does to me.
From there the story really does go full on SyFy movie as it's the present and there are any number of groups and people on the mountain. The first death we see I found fantastic as it plays out and we don't really get to see fully see what the beast (dinosaur) looks like. Which adds this air of mystery to it that was delightful suspenseful moment.
Then we start meeting the people who are going to star in the wonderfully cheesy production. A young college student doing her studies, or thesis or what-have-you, on the mountain sees something she cannot explain calls a ranger for assistance. Ranger Rick is conducting a scouting event with a bunch of kids and leaves them to go up the mountain, and we also see the Mayor, who wants this taken care of quickly and quietly it's an election year and she's having nothing to do with shenanigans that might disrupt her keeping office.
Yes the characterisation here is utterly perfect. Not only do we have a great sense of who each character is and what type of personality they have but S.A. manages to make them feel real and just like folks you know. Plus the way he's structured this story so the ebb & flow of information, death and destruction, and the story development all have those places that are connected and essential this style of storytelling. I mean it's not easy to be this cheesy on purpose and make it an extremely interesting and viable story but he manages to do that rather well.
The idea behind what's happening here preposterous at best but once you start reading this with how it comes to life it's so entertaining you get caught up in it. This really is truly what escapism through reading is all about and to have it done in the comics medium makes it almost better than a cheesy movie. This brings to life the ideas that sound insane and make them completely real by the fact that our senses tell us so.
So the interior artwork here is a bit on the amateur side but it's also very much rooted in comic book style. The creativity and imagination on display is fantastic to see. I love that the dinosaurs are the same and yet transformed so we can see their origin and yet understand their present. We do get to some nice attention to detail in the work as well plus Scottie utilises backgrounds and that couldn't make me any happier. His eye for storytelling by the way he uses page layouts with their angles and perspective and is strong and well executed.
Get lost in this because you need it, you need to laugh, wonder and explore something that shouldn't exist, kind of like the Orange Cheeto in office.