King Of Skull Island (March 05) by Myk.
Kong: King Of Skull Island (Dark Horse Press, 10956 S.E. Main St., Milwaukie, OR 97222).
With Peter Jackson's King Kong remake coming we will probably start to see a lot of material concerning the greatest Ape of all time. In this case it is a 168 page graphic novel created and illustrated by Joe DeVito and written by Brad Strickland and John Michlig. The thing that I liked most about his book when I was done with it was the expert way that Strickland and Michlig managed to not only do a sequel, but also a prequel in the same story. The story in real time occurs several years after the events of King Kong. Carl Denham, the man responsible for bringing Kong to New York has been gone for 25 years. His son Vincent wants to know what happened to him because he holds him responsible for the death of his mother. He enlists Jack Driscoll to help him find him, since Jack lead the expedition that landed the monster ape. The two decide to return to Skull Island after they find a map hidden behind a family photo. It is a trip that almost costs both of them their lives. Vincent is found by 'The Storyteller' who nurses him back to health. While she does this, she tells him the story of the mighty "Kong". She does so in English, while her bird (really an Archaeopteryx) continues to use phrase that Vincent's father Carl used to say. The story then turns to the past and all the events that lead to the current situation on the island, the situations in the tribe, the coming of Carl Denham and the results of the island losing "Kong". The story is really well crafted and the attention to detail and continuity with the original story is stellar. The paintings done by DeVito for this volume are nothing short of spectacular. You get the past, the present and even the use of three characters from the original story without compromising anything we know and love. This was a labor of love obviously undertaken by a fan of King Kong. As a fan myself, I was extremely impressed with this volume. As a fan of comic books and the surrounding culture, I can only look to future works of Joe DeVito as someone who will be mentioned with the likes of Boris and Joe Jusko. It isn't often that our favorite characters are treated with love instead of a desire to be exploited for money. Kong: King Of Skull Island will make money because of the love. (Book)