The Jungle Book #1
Story by Mark L Miller, Raven Gregory, Joe Brusha, and Ralph Tedesco
Pencils by Carlos Granda
Reviewed By Steve Seigh
It’s here! It’s finally here! I’ve been waiting for what seems like forever to get my paws on a proper copy of Zenescope‘s newest project, their very own take on Rudyard Kipling‘s The Jungle Book. Much like Zenescope‘s other tantalizing property: Grimm Fairy Tales, the new Jungle Book series takes a much darker and sexier approach to the age old source material from which the series is based. The thing to remember about Zenescope is that they always manage to deliver a unique reading experience, their books usually offering far more than good writing and stellar artwork. The Jungle Book is no different in that it makes sweet love to your eyes with it’s brilliant colors, dynamic pencil work, and haunting imagery, forever leaving you with a sense of dread as you turn each page.
Aside from the pencils of Carlos Granda with colors provided by Liezl Buenaventura, there lies a very sinister story to be told here. The adult world inside the Zenescope universe seems to be populated by those who would look to do the innocents of the world much harm. More often than not I find that the adults allow the younger characters to be comforted by a false sense of security before urging them deeper into a mysterious rabbit hole, or in this case a rickety old ship destined for an island filled with ferocious animals. You see, after a crate filled with small children arrives, damaged, on an island overflowing with an organized animal kingdom things inside The Jungle Book truly begin to take shape.
Here inside the jungle, the true majesty of Kipling’s world can be felt. Razor sharp teeth flicker and glean from the bushes, the branches shake from one hundred tiny feet walking along the mighty trees, and venomous snakes slither through the tall grass in search of their next meal. All of this and more serves to place us inside of a world that feels foreign but familiar as some of us have not walked the forest floors with Mowgli for a very long time. You’ll meet new characters, trade blows with old friends, and be left with your hairs standing on end as the king of the jungle cats, Shere Khan, moves in for the kill.
The Jungle Book is what a debut issue is all about. Adventurous, mystical, and gorgeous, this book is well worth your money. Be sure to get your copy right away as I’m sure this will be selling out in comic stores around the globe in no time.