“The Boundless Realm”
Writer: Gail Simone
Artists: Jill Thompson & Ryan Sook
A young teen girl named Kamada has left her shelter in New York. She paddles on a raft and comes on Kamandi who is lying face first in the river. She pulls him out and tells him about Gnawbit a leader of rat-men. As they are about to kiss Kamandi wakes up and finds himself falling to Earth. He is with Silverbeck and Royer the apes. They are about to die but Kamandi finds one of the shark jetpacks and uses it to save himself and the apes. Unfortunately Silverbeck dies in the fall and the rat-men capture Kamandi and Royer.
They take them to their home and Kamandi finds out the rats have been experimenting on humans but that’s OK since humans long ago put rats in a box so their tails would grow together. Meanwhile the Misfit is dying as his Tek-Moon is falling apart. He sends the Terror-naut to get revenge. The Terror-naut comes but finds the rat-men have joined their tails together to form a huge rat. Kamandi rides it and defeats the Terror-naut. For a reward Gnawbit gives Kamandi a look into the eye and he meets Jack Kirby.
“Epilogue the First: The Answers”
Writers: Paul Levitz & Jose Luis-Garcia-Lopez
Artist: Joe Prado
Kamandi meets Jack Kirby who is his father. The guy who created him. Kirby offers Kamandi three wishes. The first to be reunited with his parents. He finds himself home only his parents have passed on and left a good-by message. Then his second wish is to have all the leaders of this world brought together so he can convince them to make peace. So he finds himself in a big room with all the leaders he has met. His third wish results in him being back where he started with no memory of what happened. At the end we get an explanation for everything from Bobo the Detective Chimp.
Well the final issue was a bit underwhelming. First they got Gail Simone who wasn’t a very good choice to end this. The whole beginning with a female Kamanda was pointless. I guess it was some statement against the patriarchy or something like that. Then the whole story with the rats and lectures on evils we’ve done to rats. Ends with an unexciting fight with a giant robot.
Then the epilogue was also a bit of a letdown. A very strange ending that didn’t really resonate with me. Still on the whole I loved this series. Most of the issues were excellent and I loved the idea of bringing back Kamandi. This was a beautiful tribute to Jack Kirby. Also this issue had a moving tribute to Len Wein who recently passed away before this issue came out. I hope they do something in the future with this character. He was one of my favorites.
Writer: Rob Williams
Artist: Walter Simonson
Kamandi has just been reunited with his mother. Only she was shot by the animal people death worshippers. He soon finds out his mother was not his mother but a robot. This robot transmits that he has found Kamandi and initiated protocols to deliver him. The tower than becomes a rocket and blasts off into orbit. Kamandi joins the death worshippers in fighting the robots. He gets help from the sharks that come wearing jet packs. A dying shark give him his jetpack which helps Kamandi reach the bridge. There he finds that the rocket is taking him to the Tek-Moon an orbiting station. Kamandi disables the cloaking device and the rocket is attacked by the UFO Gorillas. Lead by Silverbeck they board the rocket with Kamandi’s help. He finds out the creature behind his kidnapping is a small malformed guy that is all head. He calls himself the Misfit and needs the genetic material of Kamandi for some nefarious plan. He also tells him he knows where his father is. Kamandi attempts to ram the Tek-Moon but the defenses destroy the rocket. Kamandi and the apes are sucked into space and falling toward Earth.
This writer knows how to tell a story. He has the mother not actually be the mother but a robot. There is plenty of wild action with sharks on jetpacks and gorillas in UFOs. Kamandi finds out his father is still alive and he gives us another cliffhanger of Kamandi falling. Only this one is a spectacular fall. The writer from the last issue gives how he would have continued. He would have had Kamandi save his mother who would than release the toxin and kill thousands of animal people. Now Kamandi has the moral dilemma of saving innocent lives or his mother. An interesting idea although I think I like this current story better. Coming to the final ending next issue.
“Mother, May I?”
Writer: Greg Pak
Artist: Shane Davis
The robot that took Kamandi brings him to a room and proclaims another ready to be stuffed and mounted. Only the other robot notices that Kamandi is a human and they are not supposed to add him to the Museum of Animal Abominations. They plan to take him to the mysterious Commander. Kamandi decides he doesn’t want to go and grabs an assault rifle off the wall. He shoots his way out and finds that he is on a base in the middle of the Ocean of Giant Waterspouts. He jumps on a jet ski and takes off. He meets up with sharks with arms and guns. They defeat the robots and take Kamandi to an island. They want him to infiltrate the tower on land and kill the Commander. He gets help from other anthropomorphic animal people.
After an ambush Kamandi decides to go it alone. He infiltrates the tower and fights the robots only to be rescued by a beautiful blonde woman. This woman turns out to be Kamandi’s mother. It is a short lived reunion as his mother is killed by others attacking the tower.
After the depressing black and white artwork it is quite refreshing to get an issue with vibrant colors. This was an interesting development in Kamandi finding his mother only to lose her right away. We get some backstory to Kamandi’s past. There was an Android War that his parents went off to fight which caused the Great Disaster. His mother also has plans to destroy all the animal people on the planet which doesn’t sit well with Kamandi. The series seems to be back on track.
“Ain’t It a Drag?”
Writer: Tom King
Artists: Kevin Eastman & Freddie Williams
Kamandi wakes up on a table. He is with other anthropomorphic people. They like Kamandi were all swallowed by the sea monster from last issue. Every day a robot comes in and drags one of the prisoners off. Kamandi always tries to fight the robot but gets his ass kicked. As the very long period goes on, we get to see the various personalities of his fellow prisoners. Finally on day 237 Kamandi is the last occupant of the cell. The robot comes and easily knocks him out and drags him out the door to an unknown fate.
This has to unfortunately be the first of this series that I didn’t care for. First is the story which just dragged on and on. It’s just Kamandi always attacking this robot and getting his ass kicked. Than one of the other prisoners gets meekly dragged away. Something that really didn’t need a whole issue to tell. The other thing I didn’t care for was the art. I’m not very picky about art but this was a let down. It was done in black & white which can be quite beautiful if properly done. This style was very sketchy and murky. So a combination of poor writing and not really good art doomed this issue.
“Not Quite the Odyssey”
Writer: Keith Griffin
Artist: Steve Rude
Kamandi has been bitten by a Polar Parasite while flying in a hang glider over the sea. He manages to make it to shore where he tears off the parasite and smashes it to death. While on the beach some goat-men come. They claim his is Odysseus come back to smite their enemies. Their enemies a wolf-people come and try to take Kamandi claiming he is Ulysses. The goat-men manage to take Kamandi to their city. There he finds out the two people are fighting over their worship of the Iliad and Odyssey. The goat-men claim that gods name is Odysseus while the wolves Ulysses. Both groups come together in a great sea battle that destroys both fleets. Kamandi manages to escape in a small boat and is confronted by a giant sea monster.
Well this issue was a fun one. I love to see a writer with a classical education. Using the ancient Greek stories of the Iliad and Odyssey was a very inspired idea. To have the two groups fight over the name which I have to admit I have heard both used. It actually inspired me to look it up. One name is Greek and the other Latin. Otherwise it’s the same character. A comic that inspires learning. Kamandi in this thinks that both sides are completely nuts and just wants to continue his search for his parents. Ends on another cool cliffhanger which I can’t wait to find out how he gets out.
Writer: Marguerite Bennett
Artist: Dan Jurgens
Kamandi has been thrown into the atomic reactor of Mishkingrad. Luckily he grabbed hold of the Cortex Crown. He uses it to transport him away and to his captive friend Renzi. He finds some dog-women taking his friend. They also grab him and put him in a sack. They then escape the city on hang gliders. Later Kamandi is freed and finds his friend all chums with the dog-women. The dog-women are The Bulldog Britanneks and they are on a dirigible called The Damnable Dirigible Doghouse. Kamandi finds out his mother build the dirigible and is now somewhere to the south.
A missile comes out of nowhere and destroys the dirigible. The Britanneks have parachutes and manage to grab Kamandi. They land in forbidden territory called The Wasteland. An ice wizard has control of giant polar parasites that take over some of the Britanneks. Kamandi uses the wreckage of the dirigible and the Cortex Crown to fashion a strange walking machine. He squashes the polar parasites and rescues the captive Britanneks. The Britanneks build a hot air balloon to go home. Kamandi goes south on a hang glider to find his mother. A parasite has managed to sneak into his pouch and comes out and bites Kamandi.
Another old group from the original series in the Bulldog Britanniks makes an appearance. Only the leader is a bulldog and they are a different group than what Kirby originally created. They had to have a scene where the dogs were playing poker. So the last writer would have used the Cortex Crown to just have Kamandi go through the reactor safely. We find out Kamandi’s mother is still alive and he is getting close. I also thought the cliffhanger was another original idea. So will be interesting how the next writer gets him out of this.
“The Insides-Out Adventure”
Writer: Steve Orlando
Artist: Philip Tan
Mack has found Kamandi. Only Dr. Vokolo has taken out all of Kamandi’s organs. Mack shoots Vokolo in the gut. Mack did this so Vokolo would be motivated to find a cure since both him and Kamandi are dying. He does come up with something from his 3-D printer. A race called the Priests of the Southern Sea are immortal and using their genes could save both of them. Only it is too late for Vokolo and he dies. Mack is able to synthesize a gene that regenerates Kamandi.
Kamandi gets better and Mack contacts a friend called Renzi. Renzi is a human but has a cyclo-heart which powers him. In a balloon the two go to the north to continue the search for Kamandi’s father. They get shot down and taken prisoner by some bear people. The bears are part of Miskingrad God Commune of the Bears. The leader is Groznovo the Alpha of Alphas. Groznovo is linked in to his people and must do everything that the majority votes on. His talk with Kamandi convinces him that he would like to be free. Yet he betrays Kamandi while they try to escape and rescue Renzi. Renzi’s cyclo-heart is used to power Miskingrad. The city gets up and forms a giant walking bear. At the end Kamandi is thrown into the furnace of the city.
The last cliffhanger was a tough one. I thing Orlando did an excellent job of coming up with a solution. I loved this Mack character. He really knows how to cut through the bull and save Kamandi. So we also are introduced to another character in the original series in Renzi. The bear people and their neo-Communist system are a very Kirbyesque type of people. I found the whole idea of this one guy being linked in to everyone and having to carry out their will as a unique idea. The only real complaint is he ended it with another Kamandi falling to his death. Not a real unique one as we’ve had several so far.
“Sub Tropical Thunder”
Writer: Bill Willingham
Artist: Ivan Reis
Kamandi and Vila are on a machine being hunted by the Kanga Rat Murder Society. Vila has an idea to save them. She drives the machine over a cliff and wraps her body around Kamandi. They both survive the fall and now Vila has formed herself into a raft. They both go to sleep as a ship comes on them. Kamandi awakes to find he was rescued by Babal Crow a dog-man and his ship the SS Typhoon. Unfortunately Babel thought Vila was a bunch of twigs and left her behind. Kamandi has to work for his passage and gets dropped off when they reach land.
Kamandi meets a famous passenger named Raja Maccao. A tiger-man who was a world famous wrestler and now a famous detective. He agrees to let Kamandi tag along on his next assignment. Along the way they are ambushed by raiders called the Bintur Horde who ride giant owls. Raja escapes by jumping into a river but Kamandi is captured. He is sold to a crazy racoon doctor that wants to harvest his organs. Dr. Vokolo has this three-D printer and he needs templates to store in it’s system. Raja manages to escape the giant fish that tried to eat him in the river and track down Kamandi. When he gets there he finds that Dr. Vokolo has already removed Kamandi’s organs.
I got to hand it to this writer. He really left the next writer a challenge. I found this story very fast paced and interesting. The characters were just all wonderful and the artwork did it justice. I loved this new character Raja Maccao. A tough old tiger who is gregarious and has this outgoing personality. I was sorry to see them get rid of Vila but hopefully she will return. The writer for the last issue didn’t give us how he would have got Kamandi out of the cliffhanger from last issue.
“The Wild Wondrous West”
Writer: James Tynion IV
Artist: Carlos D’Anda
Kamandi and Vila are about to be sacrificed to the giant jaguar god. Kamandi gets out of it’s hand and stabs it with his knife with little effect. He gets scooped up into the mouth and wakes up with two jaguar-men looking at him. The two are Professor Cano and his assistant R’Lash. The giant jaguar then eats Vila who falls in with her leg and arm gone. Luckily she can grow them back. Cano found machinery abandoned in the jungle and build the giant robot to control the primitive jaguar people.
Kamandi wants to leave but Cano insists on keeping him and Vila for study. Kamandi draws a pistol and shoots out the console screen. Then he scoops up Vila and goes out the mouth. A jet is hanging like a necklace on the robot jaguar. Kamandi manages to get it started and takes off. The jet knocks off the head and Cano and R’Lash must face the jaguar tribe. The jet crashes in the desert and Kamandi and Vila are captured by Kangaroo-men. They are given weapons and a vehicle to have a fighting chance against the Kanga Rat Murder Society.
I vaguely remember the Kanga Rat Murder Society. So this writer brings back an old enemy from the original series. I loved this issue where Kamandi finds a giant jaguar robot run by a mad scientist. This was something that the original series would have had. Vila continues to be a strong companion for Kamandi. The writer from the last issue would have had Kamandi jump in the jet necklace and take off. The jet would burn the giant jaguar and he would run off in pain. Another enjoyable issue.
“Bug in your Ear”
Writer: Jimmy Palmiotti
Artist: Amanda Conner
Kamandi has fallen off a cliff. Luckily a ship is sailing by and notices. The captain a turtle sends some bat-men to rescue Kamandi. Later Kamandi wakes in a dark room. A pod gives birth to a plant woman named Vila. She claims to be Kamandi’s. The turtle captain Fritz of the God Watchers believe that Kamandi is a messenger from the gods. They have a photo of him as a kid that fell from the sky to prove it.
Kamandi later talks to the captive bat people and finds out that Captain Fritz is not a very nice guy. At the dinner he finds out they create plant people so they can eat them. Kamandi refuses to eat Vina and storms off. He tries to convince them that he is not a god. As he does this the bat-people attack. The captive bat-people help Kamandi and Vina escape since being captive they are considered tainted. They fly to the Sun Cult island and are quickly captured by the Jaguars. The Jaguar-men eat the bat-people and tie Kamandi and Vina to a flaming alter. A giant Jaguar comes and announces Dinner!
This writer did a great job of getting Kamandi out of his cliffhanger. He put him with some really crazy animal type peoples. It has the feel of a Jack Kirby story. Vina the plant girl is a lovable companion for Kamandi. She is innocent and beautiful. Ends with a King Kong type story. Oh and the last writer just coped out in how he would have got Kamandi out of his fall. He would have left him to die. Glad he didn’t continue the story.