Mike Carlin

Ka-Zar the Savage 34 (October 1984)

The cover proclaims this final issue as a “collectors’ item.” Until the epilogue, it’s unclear why. In an amazing turn, Ka-Zar and Shanna end up in the League of Cancelled Marvel comics, or something along those lines. It’s pretty funny. Too bad Neary’s art is awful. Otherwise, it’s a silly sci-fi issue with Ka-Zar being […]

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Ka-Zar the Savage 33 (August 1984)

Carlin’s destruction of the series seems to be complete now. In this issue, he reduces Shanna to a helpless damsel. He’s got Ka-Zar running around thinking about how he’s going to save after she falls victim to an absurdly drawn out incident. But this moronic event occurs halfway through the issue, until then it’s just […]

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Ka-Zar the Savage 32 (June 1984)

Reading Carlin’s Ka-Zar is watching a series collapse on itself. This issue does have Marie Severin doing these wonderful imaginings of Ka-Zar and Shanna as a sitcom married couple. Those scenes, totally pointless and unbelievable, are awesome. Otherwise… it’s awful. Carlin turns Shanna into a ninny and a little of a harpy. She doesn’t trust […]

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Ka-Zar the Savage 31 (April 1984)

With this issue, from the opening page actually, Ka-Zar the Savage has devolved into complete nonsense. Carlin even manages to make the strong supporting cast useless against his Machiavellian pterodactyl man. Except the pterodactyl man is an inept idiot too, so it’s kind of a comedy. Paul Neary and John Beatty take over the art. […]

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Ka-Zar the Savage 30 (February 1984)

Well, after a couple good issues, Carlin’s Ka-Zar is starting to unravel. The issue also has major art problems; some of these problems might even make Carlin’s script worse, but he still makes some awful choices. He tries to keep up the high level of content, sending Ka-Zar and Shanna through a battle, imprisonment, another […]

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Ka-Zar the Savage 29 (December 1983)

Carlin’s not doing much to make Ka-Zar his own. He follows the existing template well–down to Shanna’s step-daughter being emotionally affecting from her first panel–and it feels like a good impression of Bruce Jones. Except Carlin doesn’t spend a lot of time on his protagonists’ emotions. He doesn’t keep their self-reflections going throughout the issue, […]

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Ka-Zar the Savage 28 (October 1983)

Mike Carlin takes over the writing reins and does a fine job. He handles Shanna’s personal crisis well, though he doesn’t stick with it as long as Jones would have. And Carlin’s Ka-Zar is a far more assured protagonist than Jones’s. It might help this issue’s Ka-Zar has been maturing the last twenty-seven issues. Another […]

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