Hard-hitting and unrelenting, ’68: Jungle Jim #3 unleashes a ton of bloody action upon its unsuspecting readers. Never boring, the narrative lays it on thick with a heavy dose of gore this month. If you’re a zombie fan, you will definitely get a kick out of the “’68” series.
WRITTEN BY: Mark Kidwell
ART BY: Jeff Zornow and Jay Fotos
PUBLISHER: Image Comics
RELEASE: June 5th, 2013
As the Vietnam War continues, the guilty and innocent are trapped in Hell with no chance of escape. With no adults around, a single schoolteacher must protect her students from the brutality of war. But, can she save the children while their village is being raided by an angry mob of guerillas? In the heart of the jungle, Jungle Jim carries an innocent orphan on his back. Never wanting to a parent, he now has to become a father figure to a grief-stricken little girl. How will Jungle Jim keep her alive while the tropical forest is overrun by zombies? And where the hell did that tiger run off too?
Writer Mark Kidwell vividly portrays characters who are feeling the pressure of jungle fever and the close proximity of death. As an entire village is ravaged by gunfire, the schoolteacher turns to religion to understand the horrors of war. Jungle Jim presents two sides of his personality when he wears and removes his gas mask. With the mask on, Jungle Jim is brutal and unforgiving as he pulls the trigger. His only mission is to bring death and never look back. But when his mask is off, Jungle Jim is compassionate towards the orphan and invests time in understanding her language.
The zombies, who were mindless and scattered before, are now following a leader. In his search for a fallen soldier, Jungle Jim never expected to find his comrade leading a horde of zombies. During his introduction, the infected solider is holding a zombie’s head as if it were a rifle. The undead solider throws the zombie’s head, like a knife, to kill his enemy. I’m definitely interested in seeing where Kidwell takes this bizarre action down the road.
Jeff Zornow’s grungy artwork visually captures the intensity of the jungle’s madness. When the school is attacked by the guerillas, the teacher ends up being tortured by them. The guerillas want to feed the teacher to their zombies. As she screams for her life, they shove her face near the zombie’s mouth. In an extreme close-up, Zornow illustrates the zombie licking the teacher’s cheek with his rotten tongue.
Whenever Jungle Jim hits the page, Zornow lets loose on the gore. In the very first panel, while Jungle Jim is swinging his bloody machete, there is still an eyeball attached to it. The tiger has a mouthful of zombie intestines as it snarls loudly at Jungle Jim. In an impressive panel, Zornow focuses on the serpent eating a rat in the foreground, while Jungle Jim and the orphan are leaving in the background.
“’68: Jungle Jim” #3 is such an entertaining visual experience that doesn’t disappoint. The “Jungle Jim” mini-series is about to reach its last issue. I can’t wait to see what happens in the conclusion.
Reviewed by – Jorge Solis