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Animal Man, Book 2 - Origin of the Species Paperback – July 1, 2002


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Vertigo; Cmc edition (July 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 156389890X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1563898907
  • Product Dimensions: 10.1 x 6.6 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #758,733 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Grant Morrison is one of comics' greatest innovators. His long list of credits includes Batman: Arkham Asylum, JLA, Seven Soldiers, Animal Man, Doom Patrol, The Invisibles and The Filth. He is currently writing Batman and All-Star Superman.

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By N. Durham HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on February 11, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As the second volume of Grant Morrison's existencial Animal Man trilogy, Origin of the Species is just that as Buddy Baker, AKA the Animal Man, learns some very interesting, and confusing, details of his origin. This happens as Animal Man teams up with Vixen on a trip to Africa and has a run in with some mysterious aliens, and soon enough Buddy begins to learn the true nature of his existence, but it's nowhere near as jaw dropping as what happens next. Buddy also has another meeting with B'wanna Beast, and the mysterious Highwater as well, who knows more than he's letting on. As a middle volume, Origin of the Species feels disjointed and the issues don't always connect with each other, but there is a reason for this, and it's all thanks to highly creative and possibly slightly deranged writer Grant Morrison. The art is relatively the same as before, so it's either take it or leave it depending on how you feel about it. By the time you reach the final page, you'll be stunned, shocked, and possibly scratching your head (if you've never read any of the books or heard anything about them that is), but make no mistake that what happens next solidifies the classic status of Morrison's take on Animal Man.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By E. Clemente on July 8, 2006
Format: Paperback
Animal Man Volume 2: Origin of the Species, reprints Animal Man # 10-17 and Secret Origins # 39. Continues Grant Morrison's run on Animal Man and the storytelling does improve compared to the first book. Although there still is quite a bit of the DC superhero feel to it, particularly with the guest appearances by Vixen and the JLE, Morrison begins to experiment more and we get some of the surreal and counter-culture themes you might expect. I didn't enjoy the pre vs. post-Crisis Animal Man alien storyline very much, but around issue # 14-15 Morrison starts to really hit his stride. The animal rights stories are a great vehicle for Animal Man (and Morrison too for that matter), they are engaging, socially relevant, and have a far deeper emotional impact than anything written in the series so far. The art and coloring, unfortunately is still pretty bad-- pedestrian, rushed, and devoid of style. There's a whole catalog of Morrison books you should be buying before this one, but if you have them all already then give this a shot. Story 3/5 stars. Art 1/5 stars.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Steve G. on April 8, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm a huge fan of Morrison's surreal work in Doom Patrol, and his take on the JLA injected new life into a series that had been meandering aimlessly for fifteen years or so. I bought the three Animal Man volumes as part of an attempt to fill out my collection.

I hate to say it, but this run on Animal Man is just clumsy stuff. Out of the three volumes, this is the one that most disappointed me with its ponderous detours into social issues, namely apartheid and dolphin-hunting. The problem here is that there's no subtlety in his presentation. Instead of approaching these topics with sincerity, we get straw men designed to evoke cheap outrage. Sneering, mouth-breathing thugs gloat about how much they enjoy doing bad things to good people and harmless, cuddly animals. Think along the lines of a Captain Planet villain like Hog Greedly. With utmost satisfaction they perform apectacles like stabbing a dolphin repeatedly, just to rub in the hero's face that everyone who might consider hunting an animal for any reason is a sadist and psychopath. And then Animal Man slugs the bad guy and walks away frustrated at how this failed to solve anything in the long run.

It would be far more engrossing to read about how real human beings--people who have families, who think they're raising their kids right--can be corrupted and find themselves complicit in a vile practice. Such an approach provides understanding and the potential for solutions rather than just the easy path of indignation.

Whoops, almost forgot. There's also some cosmic stuff with yelllow-skinned, big-headed aliens. This subplot is Morrison's way of taking Animal Man into the realm of metafiction, going off an a self-referencing tangent about superhero comics. It's enjoyable enough, but I thought it telegraphed where it was going pretty heavily.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Pandrio Androtti on January 1, 2007
Format: Paperback
There are all kinds of people in the world. For the needs of this review we will classify them as either someone looking for a short 'yay' or 'nay' on the book and those who want a somewhat in-depth look at it.

The SHORT: (Let's see, I read this part in issues, so I'll look them over...)

*First thing's first, if you haven't read the first nine issues go and buy that, I gave them four out of five because it's hard to say something is perfect, but it's a good read (and so is volume two, but the first has some needed knowledge).*

"The second volume of Morrison's trilogy builds the story and the tension, and can be seen as filler, but it is well written filler which is better than the most pivotal story that isn't. The story begins with a four-part arc concerning origins and reestablishing the story's focus on the fourth wall, following that we see the return of B'wana Beast and Mirror Master, the JLE, and climax in the form of the strange Dr. Highwater. It may not all make sense now, but with the final trilogy, it all falls together."

The LONG (the following can include the above or be taken as separate):

"The main themes of Animal Man are the effects of Crisis on the characters, animal rights, and the fourth wall (the last blending with the first at times). The first story of the collection touches on all of them. Animal Man continues his (somewhat) absurd fight to save the lives of any (and all) animals he can, Dr. Highwater returns and things begin to take shape in Arkham, and reality warping is throughout. This is followed by four single issues that add to the plot (like the entire run seems to do).
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