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'DC’s Ape-ril Special' #1 is worth a few smiles
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‘DC’s Ape-ril Special’ #1 is worth a few smiles

‘DC’s Ape-ril Special’ #1 is a silly affair.

DC Comics has become the king of anthologies, celebrating nearly every holiday, but now they’ve gone even further with the idea and have an April Fools special for the ape fans. That’s right, DC’s Ape-ril Special is all about the primates of the DC universe featured in three tales. Given the sheer number of monkey and ape heroes and villains, it’s kind of surprising that DC hasn’t done something like this before.

Kicking things off in this collection is “Plan of the Apes” by John Layman and Karl Mostert. This story is told in chapters as it follows Mallah, who has recently separated from his robot friend. He realizes there are a lot of ape villains, so why not team up and rule all? Standing in his way are Sam Simeon and Detective Chip (along with other hero monkeys), which builds towards a big team vs. team battle. I won’t name the teams; that’s part of the fun!

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There’s also plenty of simian references and puns galore in this tale. I wouldn’t say it’s laugh-out-loud funny, but Layman is clever from beginning to end. Think of them like dad jokes that crack a smile, and you’ll get the gist. Meanwhile, Mostert brings a highly detailed look that suits the various characters on the page.

DC Preview: DC's Ape-ril Special #1

It’s impressive how many ape villains there are!
Credit: DC Comics

Overall, it’s a cute and over-the-top tale. It feels a bit long, but it has plenty of fun moments littered throughout.

Next up is “Detective Chip in Detour” by Joshua Hale Fialokov and Phil Hester. If you’re familiar with film noir, you’ll notice the references to the classic Detour, and Hester has to be the best artist for the job. His work on Gotham: Year One is proof enough, and he draws plenty of noir tropes. That includes characters in the pouring rain and the interesting use of silhouette. It’s a convo piece for sure, but it has a nice flow with great lettering by Clayton Cowles.

Closing out the collection is “Monkey Prince in Call to Arms” by Gene Luen Yang and Bernard Chang. Monkey Prince is a weird character thanks to his strange powers, and Yang leans into that. It’s only six pages, though, so it’s rather short. That said, if you wanna see an arm tear off and Monkey Prince retrieves it, you’ve come to the right place.

If you’re a fan of the simian side of DC Comics, this will be an instant buy, but for most, I’d say curb expectations. For an April Fool’s issue, the anthology generally lacks humor. It’s more of a highlight of just how robust the monkey/ape side of DC Comics is, which is silly enough for fans to enjoy.

'DC’s Ape-ril Special' #1 is worth a few smiles
‘DC’s Ape-ril Special’ #1 is worth a few smiles
DC’s Ape-ril Special #1
If you're a fan of the simian side of DC Comics, this will be an instant buy, but for most, I'd say curb expectations. For an April Fool's issue, the anthology generally lacks humor. It's more of a highlight of just how robust the monkey/ape side of DC Comics is, which is silly enough for fans to enjoy.
Reader Rating1 Votes
7.9
The main story has a few clever lines and dad jokes
Nice noir story in the middle
Overall not the funniest collection of tales
Last story is super short
7
Good
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