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Kaijumax Season One

Writer: Zander Cannon @zander_cannon

Art: Zander Cannon @zander_cannon

Review by Matt Peterson

Welcome to Kaijumax. Where the worst of the worst Kaiju Monsters are securely locked away from the human world, whether they be villains, anti-heroes, eco-parables, or nuclear metaphors. 

Kaijumax contains a wide variety of fantastic and vivid Kaiju designs.

Kaijumax contains a wide variety of fantastic and vivid Kaiju designs.

Picking up a copy of Kaijumax Season One, like many other readers I’m sure, I expected a lighthearted, all-ages, fun romp about different monsters locked up in the slammer. Well to my surprise, this isn’t just Kaiju jail, this is Kaiju supermax.  What I found out very quickly with this comic is that Zander Cannon created a touching, dramatic, violent, and humorous story that will tug at your heart strings and leave you wondering who was chopping onions at such an odd time of the evening. Seriously though, every “episode” of Kaijumax Season One was extremely emotional, yet at the same time hilarious and extremely captivating.  Kaijumax is full of great characterization for all of the different monsters that is accomplished through Zander Cannon’s excellent writing and art.

In the first season (6 issue trade) of Kaijumax readers are introduced to a wide variety of intertwining stories that will all equally grab your attention. Corrupt guards, an evil warden, conflicting monster prison gangs, drugs, murder, and even some very odd romance.   The obvious comparison for Kaijumax is Orange is the New Black. But, if I’m being honest, I have to say I found Kaijumax more emotional and more rewarding, perhaps more serious even though it is accompanied by vibrant art that really pops off the page as a perfect compliment to the writing and story telling. The main protagonist, Electrogor’s, story is touching and if you thought the separation of a giant Kaiju monster from his young Kaiju spawn wouldn’t play with your emotions, you would be mistaken.

In addition to strong emotion, Kaijumax is also packed full of witty barbs and is loaded with prison related puns and wordplay. The book just seems to have a lot of fun with itself. Its also gruesome and violent, and at times just gross and weird. Yet, the story is captivating and the end result is a bunch of oddball characters you find yourself really caring about. As I mentioned, the characterization is solid for all the different monsters and humans in this book thanks to Cannon’s writing and art. Readers are introduced to so many unique creatures that have their own personalities and character designs. Whether its the mindless offspring of the prison topdog, a drug addicted prince of  a Kaiju crime syndicate based on the moon, or a fanatic Mechazon sworn to be peaceful, fighting the very action he was programmed to accomplish, Cannon does a fantastic job of bringing all of the characters to life on his beautifully illustrated comic pages.

Here’s the best part, the cost of admission is only $9.99. Go into your local comicshop and quickly thumb through the pages of this high quality, top notch trade paperback and just look at how the colors and art pop. When you see the quality of Zander Cannon’s art, take my word for it, the writing is just as rewarding. With Kaijumax, you will find yourself laughing, cringing, and quickly turning the pages for the next panel. You might even find yourself briskly wiping away a single tear.

Verdict:
Buy It! Buy It! Buy It! Seriously, not only is this some of the most fun I have had reading a comic all year, but its also one of my favorite surprises so far. The writing is solid. The book is humorous. The characterization is great. The story is captivating. The art perfectly matches the story and is a pleasure to look at.  What more could you possibly ask for out of Kaiju story? Oh, did I mention that there is a Kaiju that spits mad fire?

This trade collects issues #1-6, the entire first season of Kaijumax. Kaijumax will return in Season two. 

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