Sheena: Queen of the Jungle 99-cent preview

Every once in a while, someone out there in comic-book land gets an itch to try to revamp a character or well-known license. Voltron, Ghostbusters, Battlestar Galactica, the Six Million Dollar Man and a bazillion others have all popped up in comics in hopes of a rebirth of a whole franchise.
The latest such charcter is Sheena, who premiered in comics back in 1938, where she vaulted to pulp magazines and a TV show starring the well-endowed Irish McCalla.
But after that show, she slipped away into obscurity until she was reborn again with Tanya Roberts starring in a big screen movie. Still, it wasn’t anything great.
And neither is the whole Sheena concept — she’s really just a good-girl version of Tarzan.
But now Devil’s Due Publishing has latched on to her. These are the guys who successfully jumpstarted the G.I. Joe comic franchise, so they know something about getting people interested in old things.
So when DDP premiered “Sheena: Queen of the Jungle” in a special 99-cent comic, I was interested.
They changed a few things about the character and her backstory: Sheena is now in South America. She’s headquartered in a city that’s surrounded by a dense jungle. She also appears to be a Paris Hilton-like socialite who plays jungle queen on the side.
All in all, I like the changes. Each little twist gives the book an interesting spin.
South America: Moving Sheena to South America makes sense. Africa, her original, base isn’t very mysterious anymore. Instead, it’s just a sad, sad killzone.
City: Her new home places her just outside a big South American city. That’s helpful too. It will give her a standard supporting cast that isn’t just following her all over  the continent. It also gives her enemies a stronghold that she has a tough time cracking.
Socialite: It’s an interesting idea. Warrior by night, socialite by day — but it’s nothing terribly new. Still, it gives her a chance to talk to other things besides jaguars and monkeys. I guess that’s a benefit.
So, when the new series hits in June, I’ll be sure to check it out. I love stories like this that are connected to “pulp archetypes,” and the noble savage is one of my favorites.


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1 Comment on Sheena: Queen of the Jungle 99-cent preview

  1. FYI, there is a new DVD (2 discs) with 16 episodes and 5 1/2 hours of the Sheena, Queen of the Jungle TV show. Available thru and such.

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