Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Review - Turok: Dinosaur Hunter #1

"Little man. You gotta learn who your friends are."

Hunting dinosaurs isn't really a profession that's in strong demand these days. Unless, that is, you're hunting dinosaur fossils, which really isn't in that much more demand. If those dinosaurs are part of a large plan to run you and your people off your land though, it might be prudent to have a dinosaur hunter or two on hand to assist in repelling the invaders. In Turok: Dinosaur Hunter #1 from Dynamite Entertainment, Turok might just be the most marquis dinosaur hunter around. The issue is written by Greg Pak, illustrated by Mirko Colak, colored by Lauren Affe and lettered by Marshall Dillon.

Turok is really good at being alone, which works out well considering he's been shunned from his tribe. He's harassed over paying off his family's debts, forcing him to hone his survival skills and find peace in solitude. That solitude isn't enough to stop dinosaurs from attacking his people for reasons yet unknown. Beyond the really important question as to why there are dinosaurs is another one: will Turok set aside his solitude to save the tribe from extinction?

Fortunately for new readers, Pak doesn't draw too much on the Turok games, which means you can jump right in. Turok himself is characterized as quiet, deadly and resourceful, all characteristics that will surely come in handy down the road. What's more is that the way those characteristics are brought to life is very subtly and through simple actions on the part of Turok. In this respect, Pak does a masterful job of introducing Turok without forcing anything onto the character. As part of the bigger plot, Turok's shunning will prove to be an interesting juxtaposition to whether or not he shuns his tribe when faced with interlopers seeking land...who just so happen to have dinosaurs at their disposal.

Colak's art is well done, illustrating a lush landscape where Turok and his people inhabit. The layouts are very seamless, giving the reader a full look into what Turok's world looks like, rife with flora, fauna and--again--dinosaurs. Turok carries a serene expression throughout most of the issue, something that Colak utilizes to show Turok's calm demeanor and possible apathy at times. The dinosaurs are illustrated with some of the more recent findings regarding their appearance, considering they showcase some of the bird-like qualities science has been pushing more as of late. Colak doesn't shy away from mixing up the panel layouts, offering a wide range of looks that make the book flow much better.

Turok: Dinosaur Hunter #1 presents a character with the necessary skills to save his people. Whether or not he uses them though to that end is what will make the book interesting. Pak's first issue is a little slow to develop, but it affords the reader time to fully embrace the type of person Turok is and the situation he's faced with (both internally and externally). Dinosaurs being thrown in always make for a good time and Colak emphasizes their ferocity amidst the peaceful forest backgrounds. Fans of the games will definitely want to check Turok: Dinosaur Hunter #1 out, but new readers will also find some pretty strong stuff here as well.

Turok: Dinosaur Hunter #1 is in stores now with interiors below.


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