Hit-Monkey #1

Story by
Art by
Dalibor Talajić
Colors by
Matt Hollingsworth
Letters by
Jeff Eckleberry
Cover by
Marvel Comics

A reprint collected from the archives of Marvel's Digital Comics Unlimited initiative (archives, really?) features the adventures of a Japanese macaque versed in the ways of killing. He gains his knowledge of the ways of killing by watching an assassin that his tribe had adopted. After all, monkey see, monkey do, right?

The base story here is one we've seen before: a character cast out from his home returns to warn of impending danger, anguish, and suffering only to be unheeded. Of course, that poor soul was right, his former kinsmen wrong, but it's far too late for all involved. The outcast in this case is a monkey, and to make amends for not aiding his deceased tribe. The guilt is his to carry, the burden heavy.

This story is splattered with blood, but when juxtaposed with a monkey creating the spatterings, it becomes almost comical.

The story is treated as a narrative, as the thoughts of a macaque are masked to most. In doing so, the tale moves more quickly, relying heavily upon the drawings to relay the story. Talajic provides a visually intense story, sparing detail as this assassin-filled story includes more than a handful of deaths, all of them quite graphic.

Marvel has been leaning pretty heavily on lower primates lately, but this concoction seems to be a strong execution of the concept. This macaque is unfettered by previous -- or current -- bonds in the Marvel Universe in this story. It could be anytime in the past, present, or future. The potential for furthering his story is limited only by how Marvel chooses to use the character. Teaming him up with Deadpool seems to be a stroke of brilliance on Marvel's part, as neither character should be taken too seriously.

The price here seems rather steep for a previously released tale, but for those keen on monkey business, the extra dollar will prove to be negligible.

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