Infinite Kung Fu written and drawn by Kagan McLeod.
Published by Top Shelf Productions.
There are surprisingly few great comics about Kung Fu, Kagan McLeod has set about righting that wrong with this excellent book. An Epic of martial arts motion and Zombie Mayhem with elements of bat-shit crazy and 70’s Blaxploitation. A comic so rad it’s an instant classic.
Written and drawn by McLeod over more than a decade and released sporadically throughout that period. Now we have a beautiful collection from Top Shelf, nearly 500 pages of black and white artistry for $25. This is how I like my comics. A huge chunk of story for a small chunk of change.
The story has an epic scope that just keeps deepening as you read. There’s zombies, ancient Kung Fu Immortals, Ghost Emperors and the mighty Moog Jugular (who looks like the RZA from the Wu Tang and is completely deserving of his own spin-off series). Our hero Lei Kung must follow the traditional Kung Fu path of strange and often seemingly pointless training to achieve greatness. “To be a spiritual fighter, one must forget the past and learn new rules, new techniques.”
The art in this book displays Kung Fu better than just about any I have read.* McLeod has a thick almost calligraphic line to his work that suits the mystic, Eastern vibe of the book. It’s often a blur of motion and back grounds disappear to devote attention to the figures in combat. Rather than the splash pages favoured by so many artists here the techniques are broken down and displayed almost like a text-book. It’s a refreshing take on the action that I really love and would like to see more often.
More comics should be like this, it’s huge and sprawling and obviously written and released over a long period (more than a decade) but it is so much fun and I appreciate the fact it is the work of one man. There is none of the chopping and changing of artists you get from so many mainstream comics and that keeps the narrative flowing along beautifully
Should I read it? Well assuming you like Kung Fu and/or awesomeness then yes.
Buy it? Hell yeah. Dude took ten years to get this thing done, and it’s great and it costs less than $30. This is the sort of book that everyone who reads comics needs to get behind.
* In a previous life I spent a few years training Kung Fu and while I was never any good, I like to think I picked up enough to appreciate the good stuff when I see it.