Dawn of the Planet of the Apes issue 1 – spoiler light

Dawn pot Apes 1Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Issue 1 of 6

Published by Boom! Studios

Writer: Michael Moreci
Artist: Dan McDaid
Colours: Jason Wordie
Letterer: Ed Dukeshire

Cover by Christopher Mitten

Genre – Sci-Fi, Film tie-in

This is a 6 part series bridging the gap between the films Rise of the Planet of the Apes and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.

I’m not overly fond of re-makes and re-boots but I gave these films a chance. The first one on DVD the second, due to liking the first, at the cinema; I wrote about the second film on 1st August. I was a big fan of the original movies and the spin-off TV series so this reboot was playing with fire – successfully as it goes.

I’ve read several comics by Michael Moreci so when I heard about this series I thought I’d check it out. The story starts two years after the first film.

Simian Flu has mutated and skipped species, wiping out the majority of the population. That’s quite a spoiler in some ways but it is important to know.

Malcolm, the Human lead in the second film, is trying to re-harness electrical power, while living in his Grandfather’s house with Rita and Alex, his wife and son. Caesar, the lead Chimpanzee in both films, is building his new society.

In Human society we see some of the negatives that have come from the turmoil. Not everyone wants to work together, that’s something we see in the real world when things break down.

While in the Ape society we see them coming together and increasing in numbers. We see Ash on the day of his birth, he is one of the youngsters in the second film and friend to Caesar’s son, Blue Eyes.

The themes of this mini-series are likely to be similar to those of the films. Trust, understanding, racism and mistrust.

The plot so far has the cast from the film behaving exactly as I’d expect. Obviously I know what happens to many of these characters in the second film and I know what new characters are not seen in the film. So the big challenge to Michael Moreci is to entertain readers by filling in the missing details. I’m looking forward to this.

Visually the comic is very pleasing. Over all it is a dark image of a dark world. The Ape characters are easily inter-distinguishable which is obviously key. Caesar looks very much as he did in the film. We also see the sign language, both the clipped ASL that was used in the films and the real Ape body language, such as extended hands to show submission/apology.

To assist with the Ape communication the meanings from ASL and Ape grunts and hoots are translated in rectangular captions with stalks showing who is communicating. Individual Apes have a different colour to denote their communication. I ‘m slightly colourblind (though I see colours I see green and red more distinctly) so I can’t be certain of the colour used for Caesar, it loos like a yellow-green to me but might be yellow.

This issue bodes well for the mini-series.

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