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Jurassic Park†Comic Review - -

Story 6.0
Art 5.0
Value 6.0
Total 6.0
Publisher: IDW
Release Date: 30/06/2010
Reviewer: Troy Mayes


Jurassic Park

I'll just come out and say this from the beginning, I love Jurassic Park. I've read the books and seen the films and I just love it. I'm probably one of the few people around who actually wants to see a 4th film made just because I want to be able to experience that world again. When I saw IDW's latest series, Jurassic Park, on the shelf of my local comic book store I just had to buy it. While my initial excitement had me tearing through the pages unfortunately it left me a little underwhelmed.  

The story takes place 13 years after the events of the first film. The islands have remained off limits and Tim and Lex have grown up, inherited their grandfatherís fortune and hold relatively high profile positions with Lex the head of Lexxcrops a controversial food corporation. While it was nice to see some old faces in the comic and the promise of breaking new ground in the Jurassic Park universe (itís setting after the films), so far, Schreckís story feels too much like a retread of the films.  

Once again there are people who are trying to use the dinosaurs first created by John Hammond for an amusement park and, most importantly, financial gain. There are a few surprises as to who is involved in the creation of this new park (Spoiler: itís Tim (gasp) and some wheelchair guy, creepy but hey at least he doesnít want any raptors) but too much of it felt like the first and second film combined. They talk about Ďdoing it rightí this time but yet, after so many failures, they still donít question why they are doing it in the first place and you just know itís going to end in chaos like previous attempts. What saves the comic is that somewhat sinister desire to find out how bad things are going to fail and just exactly how itís all going to come unravelled this time. You also wonder how Tim and Lex will fair this time around after their ordeal in the first film. Are they stronger now or have they been scarred for life? It also begs the question of how Lex will act when she knows what her brother has been doing. That will certainly be one interesting showdown.   

The artwork was also a little underwhelming. The cover (cover B) from Frank Miller really drew me in. The bright background and the dinosaur eating a guy were quite eye-catching and instantly had me thinking ďyes, this is Jurassic Park Iíve got to buy itĒ. The inside was a different story and came from Nate Van Dyke and Jamie Grant. Everyone had weird facial expressions, itís like they donít know how to smile properly and they show all teeth. They almost looked like Lego people with their faces frozen in time in some unnatural way. Certain characters, like Lex, also suffered from a generally odd design of their face where at times it looked really long and thing like a Barbie head. Generally the sketch book look, thatís heavy on black lines, works well in comics but Jurassic Park used it in odd places. Characters had squiggles and circles on their nose and around their mouth for no real reason while some characters looked like theyíd been pieced together because of a build up of dark lines acting as a separation device (see page 18). All these little things may sound trivial but they add up to be a distraction as you notice them and think ďthatís not rightĒ. Also the main dinosaur shown at the end of the comic seemed to struggle from proportion issues. From panel to panel my perception of its size and height changed. I couldnít fully grasp whether this was something big like a T-Rex or something more like a raptor in size. Finally, the way the dinosaur was framed on the last page, by the headlights of the car, didnít look right. It had this outline that you presume is from the headlights but it just didnít seem to add up. The side shown was away from the headlights so I would have imagined that to be darker but it had this thick light outline around it. It also gave the effect that the dinosaur was frozen even though it was supposed to be moving across the road. Also, what was up with those raptors? Yikes. 

My love for Jurassic Park really wanted me to like this issue but it just didnít deliver. The artwork didnít come alive like youíd hope and the story, so far, feels like going over old ground. I can only hope that in the future it will emerge with more of its own identity.


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