Publisher: Image Comics
Writer: Ryan Ottley
Artist: Ivan Plascencia, Ryan Ottley
Release Date: 6th April 2016
GRIZZLY SHARK is a title that defies rational analysis. The story, if you can call it such, is that a Grizzly Shark is on the loose chomping its way through assorted campers and the cattle of a backwater rancher, who has hired ‘Exterminator Gary’ – a “Killer Of All Things Scary” – and his dim-witted cohorts to rid the town of this menace. And that’s it.
The Asylum have made a cottage industry out of the ever-more outlandish coupling of imaginary beasts since they stunned the world with ‘Mega Shark Vs. Giant Octopus’ back in ’08, so let’s be real here; you don’t buy a title like this for nuanced character-building and deft storytelling. You buy it because you want to see a giant flying shark tearing people to pieces in a welter of gore, entrails and torn limbs, and in this department Grizzly Shark has no equal.
Playing to Ottley’s strengths of being able to orchestrate scenes of bloody mayhem – which he does so brilliantly on Invincible – Grizzly Shark naturally betrays its origins as a late-night, drunken conversation, both in the rough, sketchbook art and the goofy, fratboy lunacy of the characters and script, but is no less fun for it.
Admittedly your enjoyment will entirely depend of whether you have a love of this brand of crazy, lowest-common-denominator black comedy, and some will blow it off as vapid nonsense, but Ottley is clearly having a blast here and reveling in the insanity, and has a wonderful sense of comic timing. And next issue promises even more, as our one-and-a-half survivors are pursued by our vengeful antagonist and, with Sea Bear yet to make an appearance, the series is bound to get even more outrageous.
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The writer of this piece was: Chris Downs