Issue by Issue – Kamandi: The Last Boy on Earth #2

kamandi 02Writer – Jack Kirby
Artist – Jack Kirby
Inker – Mike Royer
Letters – Mike Royer

Ben Boxer, as far as Kamandi knows, is the only other human on the planet that can think and talk and act like a man should. Due to that very fact, Kamandi feels a kinship with the man, one that he has never felt with anybody except his grandfather, one that he does not have with Canus despite the friendship and protection that the latter offers. The story finds Kamandi on the run with Ben after a confrontation with a couple of the Tigers. With a little help from Canus and an amazing transformation that Ben undergoes thanks to evolution and a need for mankind to survive the rampant radiation that overran the planet many years previous, the two make their getaway and head out to find Ben’s people and rescue them if need be. Jack Kirby creates another tale that finds Kamandi learning that things are a lot harder in real life and far more different than they looked on the microfilm he used to watch. Once again, Kirby packs the book full of action as Kamandi and Ben not only face the Tigers, but also some Rats, scavengers and killers and of what has been discovered so far, the worst that this new world has to offer. Though our heroes try their best, they are captured by the Rats and soon after, they come upon Ben’s missing comrades who are able to turn their bodies into hardened steel. If there is one thing that can be said of this book, it is that Jack Kirby had a very vivid imagination, mixing genres and ideas underneath a science-fiction banner. Though at times it feels a little like Planet of the Apes, it veers off into territory the movies never covered and Kirby tacks on a ton of comic book ‘science’ to make it highly compelling. Though it is only the second issue, the supporting cast has grown by two and Canus has exited the picture, though hopefully not for long as he plays the patriarch and mentor very well, even if he is not exactly as such. Things are moving quickly for Kamandi, a world of new experiences flying at him faster than he ever imagined they could to the point of overwhelming him, but at the same time, finding it quite exciting. Great stuff from the King of Comics.

4 out of 5

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