Friday, 31 July 2015

Ka-Zar: Dark Island Of Doom

Always liked Ka-Zar. Dunno why, he really is just Tarzan with dinosaurs, but I always liked him.
Maybe it's because of Zabu. After all, any story about the adventures of a boy and his sabre-tooth tiger must have something going for it.
And sure, for the greater part of his career, Lord Plunder's dialogue consisted mostly of: Grr! Ka-Zar kills! making him immeasurably less interesting than, by comparison, chattier barbaric heroes like Conan or Kull.
But still, it's always fun to spend some time in the Savage Land. And there's some great Ka-Zar stories in his short run in Savage Tales. As I've said before, I absolutely loved the Marvel Black & White mags, there was just something extra special about them, particularly as I always seemed to get them when on vacation somewhere. Like the reprint titles of Alan Class, it's like they were summer holiday comics.
That was definitely the case with Savage Tales #9, that I remember buying on a caravan park in Devon, that comes with an embarrassment of riches including: A rip-roaring adventure in a lost kingdom with a killer penultimate panel, Zabu coming in no uncertain terms to the rescue, and Ka-Zar unnecessarily killing two hapless guards simply to steal their clothes ( something the readers complained about, and were told, in essence, the book is called Savage Tales. )
It also has a cheeky John Romita close-up insert you'll spot a mile away, and a masterful Roy Krenkel inspired art job from Steve Gan ( the man whose middle name is 'criminally underrated', poor guy ).

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