Review: Man-Thing #1

After working for years, Man-Thing has regained his ability to speak and has taken Hollywood by storm…But when an ancient and mysterious danger threatens the swamp, Man-Thing is going to have to choose between his new life and celebrity, and the world he used to call home…

When it was announced that R. L. Stine was tackling Man-Thing I was beyond excited. I missed out on Stine’s popular prose books, but to see what could be done with this classic character had me intrigued. That probably worked against the comic which is both good and bad.

Man-Thing #1 has two stories in it. The first with art by German Peralta has Man-Thing in Hollywood where he’s trying to work as a movie monster. The concept is interesting but seeing a Man-Thing that’s speaking and aware really caught me off guard. It’s not bad and played in a B-movie sort of way it’s all fun in a goofy way. This isn’t the Man-Thing we’ve seen used as an interdimensional portal setting people on fire. There’s a bit more monster to it and a bit of a certain other green creature from another publisher. Again, it’s not bad, it’s just not what I expected. It definitely feels like Stine but caught me off guard. Really caught me off guard. And that’s probably why I had issues with the first half of the comic. It’s not bad, don’t get me wrong, it’s just not what I expected. Peralta’s art is solid and there’s great detail in the story, especially flashbacks. How some of the pages are laid out are really entertaining and enhances the horror vibe to it.

The second story though is more of what I was expecting. With art by Daniel Warren Johnson this is a straight up horror story that absolutely pays an homage to classics like the Twilight Zone. Evoking horror comics like EC Comics, the story involves a jealous suitor who covets a ring thinking it’ll bring him fame and fortune. Like those great stories there’s a lesson and it plays out like old horror comics. This second story is a bit more of what I expected. The look of it is fantastic, again evoking those EC horror comics of yesteryear. More of this please.

Man-Thing #1 is a bit of a mixed bag. Half isn’t what I expected and it’s still entertaining. But, what is presented caught me so off guard I was taken out of it a bit. The second half though nails the horror comic perfectly. It’s more of what I expected and wanted. Who knows what future issues will hold and maybe now I know what to expect I can enjoy it a bit more. If nothing else, even with a high profile writer things can still surprise.

Story: R. L. Stine Art: German Peralta, Daniel Johnson Cover Art: Tyler Crook
Story: 7.75 Art: 7.95 Overall: 7.75 Recommendation: Read

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review