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Tarzan: The Joe Kubert Years Volume One (2005)
Fiction Review by The Gravedigger

Tarzan: The Joe Kubert Years Volume One (2005) This collection reprints the first eight issues of Joe Kubert's DC run of Tarzan, which I think are among the best Tarzan comics. The first two stories re-tell Tarzan's origin, keeping true to Edgar Rice Burrough's original tale. This is no Disney story. Here, the apes are ferocious and are responsible for the death of Tarzan's father. Then, he meets Jane and when he's befriended by D'Arnot realizes that he's indeed a human, not an ape. His father had kept a diary and it's clear that he's Lord Greystoke. Then, there's a weird tale called LAND OF THE GIANTS, where he encounters a giant crocodile and large natives in a hidden land. There's also a huge lion and an ape. There's a midget explorer who wants the secret of their size because he wants to be a normal sized guy.

This turns out to be the "forbidden waters", which he drinks. In another story he's captured by angry Native Africans and is then rescued by an elephant friend. BALU OF THE GREAT APES recounts some difficulty he had with some other apes while growing up in that tribe, before he ever saw another white man. Then, in another early tale he accidently eats some drugged food and has some vivid nightmares, encountering a snake man, a stone lion and finally a huge albino gorilla that actually turns out to be real.

I hadn't read these stories in over thirty years and it was an entertaining revisit.

written/illustrated by Joe Kubert

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