COMIC BOOK REVIEW: BIGFOOT BOY – THE SOUND OF THUNDER / AUTHOR: J. TORRES / ARTIST: FAITH ERIN HICKS / PUBLISHER: KIDS CAN PRESS / RELEASE DATE: SEPTEMBER 1ST
The Sound of Thunder is the third and (seemingly) final part in the Bigfoot Boy series, a charmingly old-school tale about a young lad who accidentally acquires the power to transform into a Sasquatch and wreak havoc.
The tale is pretty simple; Rufus, our titular Bigfoot boy, has lost the magical totem that allows him to transform into a Sasquatch. This is unfortunate because loggers and real-estate developers have plans for the precious Pacific Northwest forest that involves evicting all of the animals and turning all of the green belt land into cheap housing. Given that it’s the job of the totem wielder to stop this sort of thing, Rufus has to find the totem again. That means dealing with bird-brained ravens, who are only interested in themselves. Luckily, he has his best friend and a highly competent squirrel to help him out.
The book’s main central appeal is Faith Erin Hicks art, as it is rather lovely. It’s deceptively simple-looking, though it’s clear that a huge amount of thought and skill has gone into the various character designs, conveying a world filled with intelligent animals, spirits and ancient earth magic. Each page is a joy to behold and given how simple the actual story is, it’s quite likely that the only joy many adults will get from The Sound of Thunder is how pretty it is. The ability to produce good, child-friendly cartoon art is an uncommon gift and Hicks’ work is reminiscent of the likes of Charles Schulz and Carl Barks in places.
The Sound of Thunder is very much the end piece to a series that began with Into the Woods and was continued by The Unkindness of Ravens. As such it doesn’t really work as a standalone adventure; a lot of the charm of both the characters and the situation is glossed over here because it assumes the reader already knows the score. If you have a young reader in your life and you want to them to learn more about being friendly to nature through the medium of giant mountain monsters, then you should treat them to the entire series rather than this overly concise conclusion.