Issue by Issue – Kamandi: The Last Boy on Earth #36

kamandi-36Writer – Jack Kirby
Artist – Jack Kirby
Inker – D. Bruce Berry
Letters – D. Bruce Berry

Kamandi and Doctor Canus, having just been rescued by Pyra, are now at her mercy, so it is good for them that she seems to have calmed down somewhat compared to her first appearance. As the book is set on a post-apocalyptic Earth, Jack Kirby returns our heroes to the planet, this time to Mexico where they discover two new races within a hotel that has somehow managed to survive. Though Kirby treads familiar ground in this particular scenario, once again with Kamandi being treated like an ‘animal’ by the Crocodiles, the Jaguars and the Wolves, he manages to make it interesting and with some action to keep the pace going, the book manages to fly by. The good thing about it all is that Kirby continues to show the reader just how it is that the animals that are now sentient have adapted to their surroundings over the years. In this case, though they all manage to live somewhat in peace with each other, each floor of the hotel is treated as a territory with only the strongest being able to abide there. We see the Wolves in this issue chase off the humans from the second floor – the Wolves being stronger and thus claiming that property for their own. It horrifies Kamandi of course, seeing humans treated as roughly as that because they do not know enough to fight back successfully and the end result being unknown, for where will the humans go now? Kamandi decides to challenge the Wolves for the floor, as is his right and it is here that Kamandi finally shows off his smarts, proving that all that time he spent in the bunker with his grandfather were not wasted days, that he did in fact learn something other than watching old historical footage of the past. As for Doctor Canus, he does very little in this issue except stand around and try and keep Kamandi from getting in trouble while Pyra, who had a prominent role in the first third of the book, essentially disappears for the rest. Overall this was a good issue, but nothing quite like the last dozen or so that were far more exciting in nature.

3.5 out of 5

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