Current Reviews


Hip Flask: Elephant Men

Posted: Sunday, September 21, 2003
By: Tim Hartnett

Writer: Richard Starkings (isn't it weird to see him writing something?) and Joe Casey
Artist: Ladronn

Publisher: Comicraft/Active Images

Comicraft's publishing wing, Active Images, is gaining a merited reputation for publishing and reprinting the most exemplary examples of comic book literature. Thus far, Strange Embrace and The Spiral Cage, powerful and irregular by their own right, have been reintroduced for thousands of new readers, each realizing the wonderful products this company has to offer. The first original production by the L.A.-based business is Hip Flask: Elephantmen, a story by Comicraft head Richard Starkings and Joe Casey (Adventures of Superman, Uncanny X-Men) about genetically altered hippos residing in a futuristic world.

From the opening page, it catches you off guard. A $3.50 pamphlet holding 33 pages of story, HFE is scripted in a highly cinematic manner---dialogue-intense with each word joining together in a perfect chorus of emotion. A high level of creativity is showcased from the start, as the writers, along with Mexican-born artist Ladronn, build a vastly convincing world of the future, where the story flawlessly plays out. Several scenes send the reader reeling, with the clever characterizations, action, and abstract-culture the writers shove into 33 pages. At times, it's more like watching a high-budget blockbuster film than a comic book, due in most part to Ladronn's stunning artwork.

Quite an exposition from Comicraft, be sure to check out Hip Flask: Elephantmen as well as the Hipflask: Unnatural Selection hardcover, now on sale at your local comic shop.

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