Warzones!: Where Monsters Dwell

warzones where monsters dwell cover trade paperback review
6.0 Overall Score
Story: 5/10
Art: 7/10

Decent visuals

Story is more juvenile than funny

Comic Info

Comic Name:   Where Monsters Dwell

Publisher:   Marvel Comics

Writer:   Garth Ennis

Artist:   Russ Braun

# of Issues:  5

Release Date:   2015

where monsters dwell #1 cover variant secret wars phantom eagle

Where Monsters Dwell #1 Variant

Reprints Where Monsters Dwell #1-5 (July 2015-December 2015).  Karl Kaufmann is a rogue.  Naming himself the Phantom Eagle, he travels the skies, romances women, and leaves them for more adventure.  When on the run from his latest adventure, Karl finds himself hired by a woman named Clementine Franklin-Cox who has her own agenda.  A strange lightning storm sends Karl and Clemmie into a tropical world inhabited by dinosaurs, Amazons, and pygmies…Karl might have finally bitten off more than he can chew!

Written by Garth Ennis, Warzones!:  Where Monsters Dwell is a Marvel Comics’ Secret Wars spinoff title.  The series comes with an Adults rating and is a sequel to Ennis’s War Is Hell: The First Flight of the Phantom Eagle from 2008.  The comic features art by Russ Braun.

I can’t say that I’m a big fan of Garth Ennis.  Ennis’s definition of adult is just adding swear words and sexual innuendoes (or overt sexual moments).  It is kind of his M.O., and it generally feels like a kid is trying to write a book that his parents would disapprove of…it doesn’t come off as clever or intelligent, it just comes off as stupid.  Warzones!:  Where Monsters Dwell doesn’t fall far from the Ennis tree in that sense.

where monsters dwell #4 cover frank cho art warzones

Where Monsters Dwell #4

The Phantom Eagle as portrayed by Ennis is almost a picaresque hero who is supposed to be a lovable rogue who sees wrong choices and makes them (a modern take on this would be Jack Sparrow).  He is a romancer and the star of the series, but that doesn’t mean you entirely like him.  Ennis works so hard to make him unlikable (and the other characters in the story unlikable) that you question why you are reading it because the payoff can’t equal what it should be.

Unlike a lot of the Secret Wars spinoff series, Where Monsters Dwell feels like it is the right length.  The story sets up the world and establishes the characters.  Ennis made the backstory of Clemmie unnecessarily convoluted (which doesn’t help the overall story) and it feels a bit unbalanced in the action sense with large sections of dialogue and flashbacks (all juvenile).

Comic books for adult can be funny, smart, and well written.  Ennis never seems to get that, but he’s found a niche with his readers.  I read Ennis and want more…something like Preacher has the potential for being much better than it is because of decent plotting and grander plans.  This is true of this outing by Garth Ennis…I’d advise skipping it, but fans of Ennis might enjoy it.

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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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