Zenescope Comics: Monster Planet #5 - Reviewed

I would like to preface this review by saying that I am jumping in to Monster Planet #5 without having read any of the previous issues. Unfortunately, Monster Planet #5 is the finale of the series, fortunately, Monster Planet #5 does do a good job of quickly introducing new readers to the story so far. Monster Planet finds the human race wiped out by a virus that turns people into reptilian creatures. 

The story of Monster Planet #5 is split into two narratives. The first finds Sergeant Spencer bringing Xavier Drake, the Lord of Vampires, back to what remains of the human government. Drake’s blood is the key to the cure for humanity. The second narrative follows Spencer’s team of supernatural beings held up at a fort on Mackinac Island. They are holding the fort from bandits and monsters, eagerly awaiting Spencer’s return with the cure. Spencer’s team is made up of a cast of characters that certainly look interesting, but don’t have much meat on their bones. There is the hulking muscle-bound Glog, and the werewolf Karl, who as it turns out has been infected by the virus, but outside of those two no one in the team really stands out.

Meanwhile, back at the government headquarters, there is some generic tension between Drake, Spencer and her higher-ups. The government, of course, does not want to let the Vampire Lord free, despite his willingness to help humanity. Spencer must determine where her allegiances lie, with her government, or with her team. Cue the daring escape from the government facility which finds the two narratives crashing together just in the nick of time. 

The highlight of the Monster Planet finale is seeing just what happens to a werewolf infected with a disease turning people into giant reptiles. The action scenes aren’t necessarily difficult to follow, but they aren’t very exciting either. It would have been nice to see each member of Spencer’s team flex their supernatural abilities in the big climax fight, but it ends up being a sluggish gun fight with a little werewolf dismemberment thrown in. 

For its set-up, Monster Planet seems to lack the dark tone to back it up, becoming more of a generic action tale than a story of werewolves, vampires, and humans teaming up to combat giant bloodthirsty reptiles. There is some solid groundwork in Monster Planet that could lead to a promising future, if the series were to continue for a second arc or spin-offs. There are many characters that could be fleshed out before bringing them back together for a team-up that really lets each character shine. After all, who doesn’t love a good monster team-up? 

-Neil Hazel