Writer & Artist: Ryan Ottley
Colorist: Ivan Plascencia
My darling wife absolutely loves shark movies and together we’ve watched as many as she can get her hands on and multiple times each. In the first few months of our marriage, she made us go to the opening weekend of Shark Night 3-D. I’ve seen the Jaws quadrilogy more times than I care to admit. She even has Sharknado 3 queued up for us on Netflix. So, when I heard that Grizzly Shark was going to be returning in color, I knew I had to read this cult favorite for my wife’s sake.
I’m going to kick off my review by saying that Grizzly Shark is just a big sticky pile of fun. Writer and artist Ryan Ottley and colorist Ivan Plascencia have managed to capture the feeling of a campy-teen shark movie in a way that’s hilarious and self-aware.
Ottley’s story immediately starts and bypasses any of the ham-handed explanations or unnecessary exposition dumps that are all-too common in the realm of sci-fi and horror. At no point is there dialogue along the lines of, “Oh, this horrible science experiment when the full moon was struck by a meteor at the start of the vernal equinox.” Readers are tossed right into the action, with an old man’s single line about sharks rumored to be living in the forest. A whopping half a page later, we have our shark coming out of a tree, biting someone in half…and the fun begins.
The simple brilliance of Grizzly Shark is that it’s not trying to be something bigger and it almost gives its readers permission to enjoy the madness. The story’s characters are obnoxious, unintelligent and are not meant to be relatable. Ottley’s creations are meant entirely to be shark bait and for the audience to sit back and enjoy the ride.
Grizzly Shark’s humor is simple, yet effective, and even at its worst merits a chuckle and a headshake. The artwork and newly added colors captures the goofiness of the story, while also nimbly jumping back and forth between a pseudo-cartoony style of shark and a horrifying man-eating monster.
This comic is a quick read and a great bit of light-hearted enjoyment. If you’re a fan of the summer monster movie genre, or just married to one, then this new mini-series should be on your list. Grizzly Shark is hilarious, gory, over the top and most importantly; it’s a lot of fun.
The Image Comics re-release of Grizzly Shark #1 in color will be the first of a new mini-series and will be in comic book stores on Wednesday, April 6th.
4.5 out of 5.0