Wednesday, December 03, 2008

MONSTER ZOO by Doug TenNapel: Fun!

Being a fan of the T-Man, I naturally got around to MONSTER ZOO
. This offering is introduced--glowingly--by Todd McFarlane (a name familiar, doubtlessly, to comics lovers).

As usual, we get nifty art, humor, scary things one needs to fight (ya know, good versus evil), humor, characters you can root for, a bit of romance, and humor. Very Happy

--well, you can guess the setting, right?--we have two best pals, kids you know are tagged as losers in high school--the fat and farty one with the skinny and shy one--who visit the zoo. Also present this day, however, is a new exhibit of this huge monster idol from Africa called "Ungabe," the name the natives called it as they fled in terror once it was unearthed. The zoologists hope it will bring in moolah to get the zoo in the red. (They totally ignore that "flee in terror" part, but we know something's up.)

Also at the zoo as the story is set up we see a girl our hero has a crush on, and her goon-idiot boyfriend (who bullies the hero early on).

Things get much worse than wedgies when animals start transforming into delightfully weird monster versions of themselves (freaky walrus thing, zebras with giant maws on their haunches, razor-toothed monkeys attacking in tandem) as the Ungabe gets its killer act in gear.

It's gonna be an "animal apocalypse" if the foreign and very short "witchy woman" and the kids don't survive and prevail.

I have to say, as a gal with a soft spot for romantic subplots, that I always appreciate when TenNapel does that little, gentle bit of romance magic (like in Creature Tech, Black Cherry, et al). He does it with a very sweet hand given the surrounding wackiness, so it's like a bit of tender calm in the storm. I like that.

The spiritual element is present but subtle here. I always look for it in a D.T. work and, yes, there it was. Smile

In a couple spots, I had to reach for the tissues cause I was laughing to tears. But then, Doug does that to me every time.

As I was reading it, I was thinking, "Okay, this would be such a cool movie." :) I was not alone, apparently: Earlier this year Sam Raimi got Paramount to obtain the rights to make a film of this.

Bring it on D.T. I'm ready for the next wild ride.

Thumbs up!

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1 comment:

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