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Royal Reviews: Jack & The Zombie Box

Written by Royal Nonesuch on Friday, April 01 2011 and posted in Reviews

It's a look at an all new graphic novella for younger readers, published by Arcana Comics!

Comic Review Cover

Credits & Solicit Info:

Original Graphic Novel
ISBN: 978-1-926914-01-5

Jack is your typical 3 year old boy who has an imaginary friend named Uncle Bug. After messing up the kitchen, Jack's dad is given the task of distracting his son while his mom cleans up the mess. To occupy Jack, he plays a DVD of his childhood favorite cartoon. Jack becomes obsessed with the show and his obsession begins to drive his entire family crazy.

Writer: Bruce Brown
Penciler: Mike Barentine
Inker: Mike Barentine
Colorist: Rafel Hurtado
Editor: Sean Patrick O'Reilly


Writer Bruce Brown scored an all-ages indie comics hit with last year's HOWARD LOVECRAFT AND THE FROZEN KINDGOM, and now he trades in mystical realms of unimaginable horror for a smaller scale, but no less story-filled, domestic comedy. 

JACK & THE ZOMBIE BOX starts off with a an out of control kid named Jack who enjoys the company of a stuffed animal whom he believes is alive.  In order to calm him down, Jack's father Brad does what ever modern parent does in our media-saturated world: Brad sits Jack down in front of the television and shows him DVD's of Larry and Dewbie Dog, a show about a mystery-solving dog and his human friend.  Chaos ensues as Jack becomes hopelessly addicted to the show. 

The great thing about JACK is that it takes full advantage of being a comic book.  The artwork really pops off the page, and the large panels happen to convey a lot of meaning.  Although ostensibly intended for younger readers, there's a great, manic energy to the book that older readers could hook onto.  The story just keeps taking turns and becomes deeper and deeper as it goes on.  The best character bit Brown includes is the fact that Brad is basically taken right back to his childhood as he relives his favorite show from when he was his son's age.  Meanwhile, penciler Mike Barentine fills each page with large gestures and exaggerated facial expressions in order to keep things appropriately zany. 

The homages to Scooby Doo and Calvin & Hobbes are much appreciated, and well executed, and JACK & THE ZOMBIE BOX uses them as a launchpad for a story about families.  It's an all-ages story with a bit of a subversive edge and unique sense of fun. 

Royal Reviews: Jack & The Zombie Box

Royal Reviews: Jack & The Zombie Box

Royal Reviews: Jack & The Zombie Box

Royal Reviews: Jack & The Zombie Box

Royal Reviews: Jack & The Zombie Box

Review by: Royal Nonesuch

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About the Author - Royal Nonesuch

As Senior Media Correspondent (which may be a made-up title), Royal Nonesuch tends to spearhead a lot of film and television content on The Outhouse. He's still a very active participant in the comic book section of the site, though. Nonesuch writes reviews of film, television, and comics, and conducts interviews for the site as well.  You can reach out to him on Twitter or with Email.


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