King Tiger is a mysterious sorcerer/martial artist who has traveled through dimensions. How have I not heard of this before?! King Tiger is a Dark Horse comic written by Randy Stradley with art done by Dough Wheatley. Apparently this is a reboot of a character. His more recent appearance has been in another Dark Horse comic series, Ghost. Now he shall be headlining his own four part series this summer. By the end of the first issue, I’m pretty excited.
Since I have never heard of King Tiger before, I was not sure what to expect. It could have either been campy and fun like Big Trouble Little China or Kung Fury or it could have been overly dramatic an boring. Tiger Fury is actually right in the middle. There is definitely this vibe of campy magic atmosphere, but there is also a great story that is just beginning to unfold. This was actually a very compelling urban fantasy story.
What made me appreciate this story was how martial arts was incorporated into the magic system. In this system, magic has to be tied to a physical source: blood, or touch (like kicking). King Tiger channels his magic through his advanced weaponry (swords!) and martial arts.
The comic seems to start right after another adventure from a different comic. It is a quiet day of introduction for the reader and the newly assigned assistant, Milo. There is no heavy exposition or back story information. We glimpse a door that access parallel dimensions, the wide array of swords, and his reluctance to talk about his past. The quiet day is interrupted by an urgent call as King Tiger is summoned. He witnesses the beginning of a dark and horrible spell that sacrifices twenty people. So begins the adventure.
The art in this comic is rich with detail and energy. There is just so much to look at but the reader is not overwhelmed at all. The colors in this series invoke both emotions of earthly comforts and complete horror. At times, the people are drawn and colored so realistically that they seem to actually move on the page!
What really got me excited was the very last panel. There is an explosion of Asian mystical creatures that I am dying to know more about. One tusked creature intrigues me the most, since she looks inspired by one of my favorite mystical creatures.
King Tiger #1 alludes to a previous history but it was still pretty easy to follow along. Whatever happened in this past, this is King Tiger’s story and I am looking forward to it!
King Tiger will be available at your local comic book retailer on August 12, 2015.
It seems that Dark Horse has quite a sense of humor. Just discovered this silly little webseries:
Writer: Randy Stradley
Artist: Doug Wheatley
Colorist: Rain Beredo
Cover Artist: Doug Wheatley
Publication Date: August 12, 2015