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July 30, 2011
 

Makko Reviews: Wanara issues #1-3

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Written by: Drew
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Wanara #1-3
Publisher: Makko
Story and Art: Sweta Kartika and Wanara Studio

So ComicAttack.Net reader, you may know all about comics here in North America. You may know all about manga from Japan. You could be one of our readers who knows about the very cool but not heavily talked about British comics that have dominated history. So how many of you know about Indonesian comics out there, raise your hands? In fact, outside of two characters, Jaka Sembung the Warrior and Barda Mandrawata the blind swordsman from Haunted Cave, you may not know anything about Indonesian comic book characters. Even those two previously mentioned you may only know here in the United States for the direct to video releases The Warrior movie series from Indonesia during the 1980s, and not realize those guys are based off comics at all! It’s not surprising considering even the Indonesian comic scene is overrun by comics from America and Japan. However, a lot of their creators want the spotlight, too, finally, damn it, and have created Makko.co, a website which publishes Indonesian comics for you to read for free and pays the creative talents with ads on the site. A little gem of a comic I have found on that site is Wanara.

Fist thing to get out of the way is the comic is in Indonesian, not the most common language for us to know here. However, Wanara is an action-packed romp that is just as cool as Dragon Ball Z or Bleach, and will surely delight manga fans and some American comic fans alike. If you want, Indonesian is written in Roman characters, and you can take the time to translate it yourself OR you can just enjoy the ride and try and make the best sense of it. I’d give you the plot to it, but the description on the site for Wanara when you translate it into English translates roughly as “The important thing in action, consider the risk of later!

So what happens in Wanara? Well, from what I’m getting, the plot roughly flows like this: A highschooler by night puts on a Monkey King mask, and along with his pet chimp goes out and robs from the bad guys (maybe, translation issues here). However, the bad guy he has come across turns out to be literally a gangster Panda (who is like the Dad from Ranma 1/2 meets The Godfather), who employs tons of henchmen, including a crazed killer in a lion mask who can throw cars off buildings. The gangster Panda, named Boss, also has captured a superhero (or maybe a martial arts master, translation issues here again) who looks like an aging version of one of the Gatchaman team mates, who is then rescued by a guy who looks like a more rugged version of Kato from the Green Hornet. There’s a lot of good action, fights, and explosions, and we are only three issues in.

Once again, would it help if I could write and read Indonesian? Yeah. So that’s probably not exactly the best story details above thanks to a lost-in-translation moment, but overall that’s the gist and it’s all pretty damn cool! At moments like this I wish I took Indonesian instead of Japanese in college. Sigh, oh well. The most important thing for you to do is get over to Makko.co and sign up (it’s just like a sign up screen for American websites, it’s easy, safe, and not hard to figure out) to become a free member and read all of this great comic for free! Check it out!

Drew McCabe
drew@comicattack.net

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