Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Ha, you thought no more jungle girls? But I said Post #25 was my last look at the subgenre from the Golden Age. This comics, KYRA #1 (first of six issues from "Elsewhere Publishing"), came out in the mid-1980s. And whereas MEDIA STARR (post #21) was at best a "moderate curiosity," the KYRA series is at least a pleasant one.

As creator/writer/artist Robin Ator relates in the first issue, he modeled his jungle-heroine upon a Golden Age character named KAGEENA, a non-mainstream fetish-comic about a muscular jungle girl, executed by erotic artist Gene Bilbrew. Ator's muscle-babe may also take some inspiration from the bodybuilding craze of the late 1970s that gave us PUMPING IRON and Ah-nold, since Ator doesn't explore muscle-culture in an overtly erotic light. However, I seem to remember that #1 features a scene in which Kyra kills a male opponent by swinging down on him via jungle-vine and squeezing his head with her thighs. Let's see Tarzan try that! (On second thought, let's not.)

As anyone can tell from the cover-shot Ator's draftmanship was, unlike his character's musculature, something less than well-honed. Nevertheless, all six issues of the KYRA series have what a lot of forgotten 80s titles lack: loads of energy, most of which manifests in heady fight-scenes. If I could find a tenth of that energy in current comics, with their Alex Ross retreads, I might be buying more current comics.

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