Published on April 20th, 2019 | by Kevin Given0
Review: Jungle Queen Sheva #1
A brand-new Jungle Queen has arrived! Back in the day there were many scantily clad women who swung through the trees of Africa and South America, probably more than their male counterparts. Sheena, Camilla; Wild Girl of the Congo, Jana of the Jungle and many more. I don’t believe any of them are around today, except Sheena, I believe Dynamite is still doing Sheena comics, so Sheva is a welcome addition to the genre and issue one holds a ton of promise!
The Creative Team:
Sheva is the brain child of Eliseu Gouveia. The opening pages of issue one, a story titled Woodlings, shows the protagonist at home in the trees of her native land, Kivuli Valley of Shadows. A place, it’s said, “where legends come to die.” The opening shows our heroine saving a young child from a lion. Unlike many Jungle characters, Sheva doesn’t kill the lion. A more compassionate character unfolds. This Jungle girl cares about the creatures in her land as well as it’s people. Then Sheva’s land is being invaded by some Amazon warriors seeking the Heart of Apollo. Which they believe Sheva and her people know about, even though they don’t. I loved the action that sets the stage from page one. This issue brings us a different type of Jungle girl and makes it a compelling read. In addition to the aforementioned compassion for all creatures great and small, we’re also shown a tree-dweller that won’t tolerate insolence from outsiders and will defend her people to the death if need be. Tough but compassionate. One regular character in this title is Hodari, who appears to be an ancient witch of some kind which adds a mysterious element to the proceedings. But is she friend or foe? Sheva needs to consult her, but there seems to be somewhat of a contemptuous relationship between the two, keeping the reader on their toes concerning this character. I love the unpredictability of this title, making it different from any title on the market. Great stuff includes Sheva’s surprise at the enemy invading her land and Hodari’s inadvertently giving Sheva the answer she seeks to who the invaders are.
Eliseu Gouveia the artist brings a fresh zippy style to the title which makes it easy on the eyes. One battle scene has Sheva fighting an amazon. The full page has no panels, the action just oozes from one scene to the next in a way that has us follow without the need to re-adjust our eyes to a next panel, giving it a flow that produces a seamless page. A truly original style that is needed in today’s comic book world. Highlights include the arrival of the enemy and the battle splash page with the Jungle creatures in full attack mode.
Sheva, Queen of the Jungle revitalizes a genre that has long been dormant in the world of comics. There was a time when jungle comics were the norm, from the King of the genre, Tarzan, to Marvel’s Kazar and about a hundred imitators in between. But the genre slowly died until the only one we have left on the market is Dynamite’s Sheena…until now. This is a great introductory tale with a neat little twist at the end and it promises to re-invigorate the Jungle genre in a unique way. **** (9.2 rating)
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