on November 12, 2011
fluid figurative comics book art, zombies, kung-fu...
what else would a dork like myself want in a comic book...and this is more of a comic tome.
this is definitely the way to read the series....in a sub 500 page collection.
if you like shaw brothers films, the 70's, treachery, revenge, black magic, ghosts, and fun training sequences key to any
kung-fu movie - this is your book.
on January 8, 2012
I actually did not order Infinite Kung Fu from Amazon; rather, I impulsively picked it up at a local book store, mainly due to its attractive cover and promising premise. That was a great decision.
The actual physical product is of very high quality. The outer cover is well-made, sturdy, and the cover image captures the spirit of the graphic novel quite well. The pages are of a strong material, and the illustrations are gorgeous. From a physical aspect, it is definitely worth the $25 price indicated on the cover.
As for the story, it is a highly entertaining journey through a world dominated by corrupted spirits, death, and, of course, a healthy amount of kung fu. I cannot claim to be incredibly well-versed in this genre, therefore I cannot comment on how original the work truly is, but from my limited experience, the story seems fresh and original. The characters are well drawn and crafted, and although not incredibly complex, this isn't a negative as complexity of character isn't a goal of the graphic novel. The point seems to be a love-letter to the kung fu genre masked as a fun and entertaining adventure through a martial world, and it excels as such. It is fun to read, interesting, and quite simply, cool.
I appreciated how almost every decision or event is given an explanation. It may not be the most logical explanation, but at least the author dedicated time to explain why certain things are the way they are in the story. Also, most events do not seem rushed or soiled by deus ex machina (though the ending may be seen as such).
Overall, this is a quality product, both in regard to its physical being and the story within. I definitely recommend it.
on May 15, 2012
Originality is something of an elusive force nowadays. Whether it’s in literature, film, music, etc, it just seems like everything is repeating or being re-used, remade, or re-imagined. I have found a virtual gem of originality in Kagan McLeod’s “Infinite Kung Fu” (read my interview with Kagan McLeod @ BeyondHollywood.com). What is this “Infinite Kung Fu” I speak of you ask? Well it’s a tome of martial arts goodness, a volume of zombie madness, a text full of fun! That’s what it is! Come join me as I take you on a quick tour through the Martial World.
Born of a love of all things kung fu, “Infinite Kung Fu” is a melting pot of kung fu pop culture references. It has Shaolin monks, Blaxsploitation Kung Fu, Poison Kung Fu masters, Supernatural Martial Arts, a bit of anime influence and last but certainly not least zombies. A mash-up of all things pop culture associated with kung fu, this independent comic brings everything you love about the genre in ass-kicking abundance. But the martial arts, as major a part they play is only the framing piece for the story.
In a world where there is now more death than life, martial arts reigns supreme. The dead rise from their graves searching for new bodies for their spirits to inhabit. The circle of life has all but ended. It is into this world that a young soldier named Yang Lei Kung will arise to become a legendary hero.
Sounds cool right? I mean I could be talking about some upcoming movie. And the reason is because McLeod, who wrote and drew the book, frames the story like you’re watching an old school Kung Fu flick, complete with sound effects for special moves. Lei Kung, the protagonist even fits the bill of the student who learns from several teachers, with his experiences being the actual lessons (he learns Shaolin Kung-Fu by keeping pigeons from crapping on their sparring automatons known as the Bronze Men).
I first came across this comic on a website from TopShelf, the publisher of the book. They had a preview and I voraciously read through it. When I got the actual book, I started over again and burned through that too. It was everything I loved about Saturday Afternoon Kung Fu flicks. Everything I’ve loved about the genre. The philosophy is there as well. I truly enjoyed the characters, the over-the-top fights, and the complete originality of it all. Where else can you find martial artists that look like they’re from the 70’s in the same story as Chinese immortals, and an Spirit Emperor? NOWHERE! This book is a love letter to the genre that everyone should have the chance to read.
I can’t speak highly enough about this book. I absolutely loved it. The art is great, and even the panels evoke scenes from a movie. Every punch, kick, parry, and dodge is shown with detail. I’ve read it twice since I got it. All 400+ pages of it and I still want more. I’m hoping that we can get a prequel about the origins of the 8 Immortals that are the mentors in the book. And the whole time I’m reading all I could think of is how cool this would be as either an anime or a live action film — or both!!! Not since “Afro Samurai” have I seen such a creative mash-up of ideas and genres that worked so well and had me so fully entertained. And like that property that started out as a little known comic, I think this could be something big. It’s that good.
So if you grew up watching things like “The Five Deadly Venoms” or “36 Chambers of Shaolin” or any of the modern Kung Fu flicks out today, this book is for you. Check it out!!!
on July 5, 2012
This title started out online as a webcomic and is now collected in a massive 460 page volume that really shows the strength of a long-form web comic. A traditional comic book would have delivered the same story in 150 pages or less, but the decompressed style of a webcomic allows the story to not just breath, but exhale, as it moves off on various wild tangents that eventually tie together and weave a depth to the story that provides a rich and entertaining experience.
Having said all that, Infinite Kung Fu still boils down to the premise of Kung Fu masters fighting hordes of zombies in order to save the world from an evil emperor. It's a simple, pulpy, concept that the book executes perfectly with zany plot twists, excellent black & white art, and flawless kung fu logic. If you love old school kung fu movies and want to read a spiritual take on zombies, this comic is for you.
on December 31, 2012
This one has it all, shaolin kung-fu training, mystical kung-fu, Poison Clan styles, revenge, zombies.... awww man I could go on forever. If you grew up on "kickas" as we call it here in Ja, then you will fully appreciate this most excellent work. get the graphic novel as you want to ensure you kick back fully relaxed and drink this massively good book in. If you have music that fits the genre in the martial world, even better
on April 23, 2014
Though I love the Kung-fu related books and novels. I was a bit disappointed with this one. I think the art is cool and the story not so bad. I wish there was more illustration and depth in the art work. The backgrounds are bland and could have been better done with more detail. As an artist myself, I think there is a great potential here but it lacking I feel in artistic presentation of the story.
on September 30, 2011
I remembering purchasing Kagan McLeod's Infinite Kung Fu Comics as soon as the first 7 issues were released. I still have them nicely kept with one of Kagan's hand drawn sketches. I was super exited to see the TPB version with the whole story finally completed! It's everything you could want from a Kung Fu graphic novel, filled with cult stereotypes, classic Shaw Brothers movie references, genre inspired characters and best of all...ZOMBIES! The story fits right into a 1970's Martial arts throwback film! The art work is fantastic and inspires me as an artist. McLeod's pen-brush and watercolors, along with penciling is practically perfect for this comic. The 400 plus page book is worth every penny! The front cover art reminds us of a Chinese ink brush scroll and the book feel's like one of my Kung Fu manuals (don't know if this was purposely done? I highly recommend you follow Yang Lei Kung on a action packed and fun read through Infinite Kung Fu!
If you like the old 70s Kung Fu movies, zombies, and graphic novels full of fighting and violence, you'll like Kagan McLeod's "Infinite Kung Fu." This 464 page graphic novel is light and fun entertainment, just like the old Kung Fu movies. I read it for the same reason I watch those old movies once in a while. Fun escapism reading.
The art work is great. It is black and white and might be a bit too graphic with blood and such for the squeamish, but I doubt people that are squeamish are going to check this book out. It's more fighting and blood than philosophy.
Also interesting are the Introduction by Gordon Liu and the Foreword by Colin Geddes. I also liked the Kung Fu School at the end of the book that discusses a very brief history of Kung Fu Cinema. Bottom line, if you want a fun violent graphic novel with a Kung Fu theme reminiscenttt of the old movies from the 1970s, check out Kagan McLeod's "Infinite Kung Fu."
Reviewed by Alain Burrese, author of the "Lock On Joint Locking Essentials" DVD series and others.
on March 18, 2016
One of my favorite reads ever. Do yourself a favor and buy this NOW. I was constantly reminded of Tarantino for some reason. If you're a fan of martial arts movies and comics, you'll dig this. If you're not, you probably still will dig this.
on September 4, 2011
I really really like this book. For the price, you get a *lot* of comic. More than 400 pages! Kagan McLeod has really put a lot of passion into this piece, and it is very much an enjoyable read.
There is, however, a problem. If you've found & read the free version of the comic on the Top Shelf website, then you're going to be a bit disappointed by this book, like I was. In the last half of the book, Kagan drops the story-infused nature for more action-infused. Which is fair, I mean, I've seen a couple of kung fu movies (literally - two) and they never really bothered with "story" in the last half-arc.
The problem for me, anyway, was that I was drawn into the story and the characters that Kagan created in the first half. I loved the absolutely campy nature of the book. The second half doesn't "lose" that, so much as disregard it for martial mayhem. There are a *lot* of pages of fighting, no real dialogue. Which is a shame.
For the first half alone, this book is worth the money and the five stars. I don't want to downgrade it in case someone *doesn't* buy it... but if you have read the online version, rethink what you're looking for in the last half. It becomes a different comic with a different style.
Still worth buying if you've read the online version? Yes. I like the idea of a giant tome of kung fu (and baby, it is a *giant*, sexy tome of kung fu), but don't be set on a continuation of the action-adventure storyline. Just imagine that everything comes together really quickly, and then they fight. For about sixty pages.
Worth buying if you have no idea what I'm talking about regarding online versions? Double yes. Don't even look for the online version, just buy the book. It won't disappoint.