Animal Man 1: Animal Man

9.0 Overall Score
Story: 9/10
Art: 9/10

Great story and strong art making an obscure character one of the most interesting characters in the DC Universe


Comic Info

Comic Name:  Animal Man (Volume 1)

Publisher:  DC Comics

Writer:  Grant Morrison

Artist:  Chas Truog/Tom Grummett

# of Issues:  9

Release Date:  1991


Animal Man (1) #1

Reprints Animal Man (1) #1-9 (September 1988-March 1989).  Buddy Baker is a superhero…but he has always been a second stringer as Animal Man…the man with animal powers!!!  Animal powers haven’t ranked high among the superhuman abilities when the world is filled with people like Superman and Wonder Woman, but Buddy’s about to change that.  He’s pushing his powers to their limits and discovering new abilities.  When Buddy is invited to join the new expanded Justice League, things might be looking up for Buddy and his family.  An invasion is coming however and Buddy’s good fortune might not last.

Written by Grant Morrison and illustrated by Charles Truog and Tom Grummett, Animal Man 1:  Animal Man gave the little known hero his own series after the events of Crisis on Infinite Earths  in which he played a role.  The series was met with high critical praise and with Doom Patrol made Grant Morrison a major player in the comic world.

Animal Man first appeared in Strange Adventures (1) #180 (September 1965) but really didn’t go anywhere for years.  Animal Man, as mentioned, did have a minor role in Crisis so it was a surprise when he received his own series.  While this series for the most part is a rather straight forward superhero tale, it does lead to bigger and better things in Morrison’s run.


Animal Man (1) #5

Animal Man is introduced really in this volume and his family is shown to be an important role.  This has carried on for years as other writers have come in on the character and generally becomes the thrust of Morrison’s overall story.  It was a different approach when Animal Man was written (especially for DC) and now a more rounded superhero is much more common.

The stand out issue in the collection is the very popular Animal Man (1) #5 (December 1988) which is called “The Coyote Gospel”.  This issue plays with the idea that Looney Tunes’ Wiley E. Coyote could be a real creature and what it would be like if he was.  It also introduces an idea which becomes the crux of the third volume of Morrison’s Animal Man (Animal Man 3:  Deus Ex Machina) which looks at the idea of a great creator.

Animal Man is a fun, original series and it is still relevant today.  The end of the collection has a crossover with DC’s mass event title Invasion which ends up altering Animal Man’s powers…setting up the second volume of the collection.  Animal Man 1:  Animal Man is followed by Animal Man 2:  Origin of the Species.

Related Links:

Animal Man 2:  Origin of the Species

Animal Man 3:  Deus Ex Machina

Animal Man 1:  The Hunt

Animal Man 2:  Animal vs. Man

Animal Man 3:  Rotworld—The Red Kingdom

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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