Issue by Issue – Kamandi: The Last Boy on Earth #31

kamandi-31Writer – Jack Kirby
Artist – Jack Kirby
Inker – D. Bruce Berry
Letters – D. Bruce Berry

After absorbing the radiation caused by the explosion last issue, Ben Boxer has now become a giant and Kamandi has no idea what to do to help him. Additionally, as a strange figure approaches the island they are on, Ben awakens and attacks, now seemingly mindless. The stranger turns out to be Doctor Canus and while he and Kamandi try to figure out what happened to Ben, they have to try and not be killed in the process. At this point, Jack Kirby also brings back Prince Tuftan who you know could not have been very far behind if Doctor Canus was present. It is good to see the two characters return as they have been long absent from the book and it helps to bolster the cast a little more with a couple of friendly faces. Things are a little different with Tuftan though, he is more focused on being the dutiful son than he is the friend and he treats Kamandi more like an animal than he does a man. Kamandi is not too happy about this little turn of events, but at the moment, it pales in comparison to the threat that Ben now represents. Eventually, Kirby does reveal just what it is that has happened to Ben through Doctor Canus and his investigation of the flying saucer. What Kirby does in this issue is present it like an old monster movie, similar to something like The Amazing Colossal Man where he goes on a rampage, destroying everything in his path. Kirby is a master artist and reading this book is as exciting as any film. Watching Ben take after our hero and the good Doctor gets your blood pumping and the fact that he is so determined to cause their destruction tells you that there is some sort of presence behind those eyes, whether it is Ben or not is not revealed until near the end of the story. One question that arises is why exactly is it that Tuftan and his forces are out upon the sea near this island of all places. It seems kind of random, but with Kirby, there is always something up his sleeve and perhaps it will all come to light in the next book. This was a very fun issue from top to bottom which continues the title’s upward trend featuring innovative storytelling.

4 out of 5

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