By Koppy McFad
June 14, 2008 - 01:03
This second issue of Joe Kubert's caveman creation, Tor, is a thrilling, yet thoughtful journey through a savage world, where man is just one link on the food chain.
The story is told through narration, without word balloons or dialogue. Tor, an outcast from his tribe, rescues a child from a ape-like society and this action thrusts him into a journey where he encounters a variety of perils and mysteries, ranging from a bizarre alien-looking giant to a sabre-toothed tiger.
The title character is no battle-hardened barbarian, nor a hero who always does the right thing. He even begins to question the humanitarian impulses that led him to save the child. But in this issue, through a series of flashbacks, we learn just why Tor is special and why he has been ostracized. He exhibits signs of early human cleverness and also of curiosity and compassion that set him apart from his contemporaries who are concerned only with food and power.
Despite his gifts, he must struggle every step of the way. scavenging food from a carcass or battling a wild beast only with a sharpened rock. Although the world in this comic, with dinosaurs co-existing with humans, is far from realistic, it does come alive with its dark shadows, bright foliage and the moving simplicity of the text.
The art is not Kubert's best. It could use more detail and more shading. But it still stands out from all the other books on the stands that fill their panels with lines, colours and dialogue to the point that the pages look unattractive.
This story also has nothing to do with any big "event", nor do you need to know anything about the continuity of 'Tor" to enjoy it. It is a perfect antidote to all those suffering from Crisis Countdown overdose.
Rating: 9 /10