Beek's Books - an ongoing collection of comic book reviews
 Age of Reptiles: The Hunt (Dark Horse)
5-issue mini-series
by Ricardo Delgado, colored by James Sinclair
Rating: good, Content: [beyond genre] [sci-fi]

 Dark Horse asked here on the net for people to look over the first two issues of this series and write letters of comment for when the series is published. I warned them that I'd probably review them here, but they still sent me a photocopy. {grin} This review is an adaptation and expansion of that letter, which appeared in #2.

 The dialog and narration in this series are flawless. There aren't any.

 With this series (and its predessor, subtitled Tribal Warfare) Delgado takes on the challenge of telling an entire story without any words whatsoever. This is always difficult, and even more so when the setting and characters are beyond our usual experience, like this. But he has the advantage of being able to assume that the reader knows a little about the ol' thunder lizards, and has probably seen Jurassic Park as well. There were places where I had a hard time telling what was going on, who was who, and so forth, particularly some of the "crowd scenes". (This was less of a problem with the colored, final product, with the aid of some distinguishing markings on the dinosaurs, but still a bit of a problem.) For the most part it does work, however.

 The opening scene effectively establishes the primary rule of this society: eat or be eaten... or both. And it introduces us to our characters, most importantly the allosaur (whom I think of as "Alice", in homage to the Land Of The Lost character). One complaint (which may simple indicate how out of touch I am with current dinosaur research) is that Alice seems a little too intelligent and adaptive. I wouldn't expect her to be clever enough to do some of the things she does.

 All in all, it's a good story. At the least, it helped satisfy my need for a dino "fix" while waiting for the next installment of Steven Bissette's Tyrant. {sigh} (Bissette reportedly likes Delgado's work, by the way.)

 As an uncle, I do try to pass my addiction to comics on to my sister's kids, but with the direction the market's headed in over the past couple decades, I haven't found many books that my six-year-old niece would find interesting. I may try this one out on her. But she'll be harder to please; she knows far more about dinos than I.

Barnes & Noble GET IT: This book is available in many comics shops (call 1-888-COMIC-BOOK or check your local yellow pages to find one) and mainstream bookstores. Or you can order it or the earlier book Tribal Warfare online from Barnes & Noblehere (and help support this site through the small commission we get on each sale).

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