Review | Jack Kirby Kamandi The Last Boy On Earth Artist’s Edition Vol 1

Last updated on February 9th, 2017 at 08:25 am

The 3rd Fourth World Artist’s Edition,  Jack Kirby Kamandi The Last Boy On Earth Artist’s Edition Vol 1 is another must-have volume of this artist’s work.

Jack Kirby Kamandi The Last Boy On Earth Artist's Edition prelim coverJack Kirby’s most beloved creation is now an extraordinary Artist’s Edition, collecting six complete issues of Kamandi: 1, 2, 5, 6, 7 and 9, as well as covers and extras. There is no better way to view the magic of King Kirby than in the one and only Artist’s Edition format!

As with all original artist’s gallery editions this is a collection of classic comic material and I’ll be reviewing the book and not the story. For a complete list of all current and announced editions, with review links, please visit our Index.

Jack Kirby Kamandi The Last Boy On Earth Artist's Edition Vol 1 interior 4

This Artist’s Edition is full of new directions for the line. First off is the addition of “Vol 1” on the spine. This doesn’t appear in the indicia or in the solicitations; there must have been sufficient material uncovered during the curation of this book to garner further additions. Also new is a one page synopsis with cover for issues skipped; three in this volume by Richard Howell. It’s a slick addition providing a consistent narrative, and something I hope to see in all future volumes.

Jack Kirby Kamandi The Last Boy On Earth Artist's Edition Vol 1 interior 5

Included are six full issues with no missing pages. Along with that are the extras: pages from the missing issues and a few character sketches. The material is clean and complete, with good and clear scans. Variations in the blacks can be seen on most pages. There is yellowing, but it isn’t extensive or distracting. In fact most pages are tan. It’s nice to see the covers amongst the issues instead of stacked up at the back.

Jack Kirby Kamandi The Last Boy On Earth Artist's Edition Vol 1 interior 2

There are many, many stunning pages in this collection, showcasing Kirby in his later period. He seemed to excel with the character Flower, as seen above. There are some panels that look very “un-Kirby”, like the last panel in the first image above.

Production is, as always, consistent and top notch. The book was shrink-wrapped and came in a cardboard case. The product sticker is black and white, a step back from the recent colour stickers. Binding was a little tight with few pages laying flat.

Jack Kirby Kamandi The Last Boy On Earth Artist's Edition Vol 1 interior 3

Design by Randall Dahlk is bold and striking, electrifying the additions. It will split this community for sure. Here’s his take:

When designing this Artist’s Edition book, I was inspired by hazardous waste and radiation signs. I added a little grit and aging to everything to make it look like it’s been exposed to the elements and it didn’t hold up too well. I also kept the palette very basic and limited. I think simpler is better.

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Jack Kirby Kamandi Artist Ed HC Vol. 01 – $120.00

Retail Price: $150.00
You Save: $30.00

Scott VanderPloeg Written by:

Editor-In-Chief. Scott works in I.T. but lives to eat and read. His other ramblings can be found at eBabble. Art collection at Comic Art Fans. Joe Shuster Awards Harry Kremer coordinator.

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One Comment

  1. July 9, 2015

    Another winner for Kirby fans. The one thing that struck me was how improved the art looked stripped of its colour. On the four colour page, Kamandi was never as visually arresting as the Demon. Kirby’s figures were appearing stunted and some of the drawings looked less assured. The stories were always interesting, and issues 1,6, and 9 were shockers for me when I was fourteen, but the draftsmanship seemed to have more obvious faults to my eye (splash pages aside, and my judgment being entirely subjective). Seeing the originals reproduced in this volume have removed all doubts. This is great work. Although I still long for an edition of The Demon, the Kamandi AE has gone a long way in allowing me to re-experience the work “for the first time” with greater appreciation. I hope there is a volume two and that it contains issues 10-14, the highlight of the series for me. (Yes, it’s all about me!) Less pages in this volume also means a slight reduction in price. What’s not to like about that?

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