Synopsis: What is The Phantom? Welcome to the King, full of two-fisted scrapping and rugged courage and breakneck combat and indestructible Legacy!
Review: The dramatic description above pretty much sums up this book and probably the whole series.
Dynamite Entertainment have been doing a lot of late with classic pulp characters from as far back as the 1930s and have really been doing some great stuff.
King – The Phantom is just one of a collection of new books that Dynamite are doing to pay homage to King Features… the comics company that brought us to iconic Flash Gordon, Mandrake The Magician and The Phantom.
Issue one of the Phantom, which is written by Brian Clevinger illustrated by Brent Schoonover takes place after last years ‘Kings Watch’, which featured Flash Gordon, The Phantom and Mandrake. Fans will recall that the world left behind after ‘Kings Watch’ has regressed in terms of technology and things have gotten rather primitive.
In this story sees Lothan Kehwabe taking over the mantle of The Phantom, otherwise known as The Ghost Who Walks until such time as the 23rd Phantom can be find.
This first issue of the mini series is pretty heavy with exposition in the first few pages. So it is a good jumping on point for those that have never read a Phantom comic before.
There is a good bit of banter between The Phantom and his partner in the story and Clevinger has done a pretty good job of keeping the narrative fairly simple so as not to overwhelm newer readers.
I love the way in which Brent Schoonver depicted the action throughout this first issue. Pages 12 through 14 in particular stand out because of how the artist has managed to provide a visual balancing of showing us The Phantom being both stealthy and brutal in taking down the bandits.
The second half of the issue sees The Phantom and his mate deciding to go under cover in order to infiltrate a gang that has not been active for a hundred years.
This is a pretty strong first issue, but for me the pacing was a little off at the start due to some of the expositional work, which is needed to inform newer readers. But once you got past those first few pages the story begins to open up pretty well and in true pulp style we get left with one hell of a cracking cliffhanger.
- Some really nice action
- A little heavy handed with exposition at the start of the comic