The wickedness of mankind has moved the Creator to destroy the world by way of the flood. Noah has been tasked with building an ark to save his family and the animals of the world. But this is not Noah’s story. For darker powers have commanded the sorcerer Shrae to build his own ark and save the unnatural creatures of the world—such as the vampires, the dragons, the naga, and the manticore. But what will happen on a vessel crawling with monsters, where insidious intrigue and horrific violence are the rule of law?
This is definitely not the Love Boat. The story takes one of the most well known moments of the Bible and flips it on its head by looking at another side of the coin. What if there was a ship full of evil creatures on it, and what would such a voyage be like? Writer and creator Cullen Bunn has a great idea how it would be: Intense.
From the very beginning, the book sets up how tense the atmosphere is on this ship. The passengers of the vessel want the Captain to charter a course straight for Noah’s ark so they can raise Hell. Unfortunately, Shrae has strict orders not to attack Noah, and knows disobeying will result in a severe punishment. The disgruntled and violent attitudes of the monsters help to make the atmosphere feel like a powder keg, fearing with each turn of the page someone is going to spark a match.
By the end of the first issue, you can tell this will be more than a simple story of good vs. evil. With the final page, you come to a moment of shock and awe which will have you begging for the next issue.
Juan Doe provides the artwork for the entire issue and delivers some incredible work. The monster designs are very distinct but still bear a similar feel so the reader isn’t guessing what the creature is supposed to be. Doe also employs detailed color work to help show which characters are innocent (represented in duller, drab colors) and who are the monsters (shown with bright and harsh details). Also, the cover Doe created is very sinister in nature. It takes a moment to realize its not a being with a cloak but the helm of the ship and drives home the point this is not for the faint of heart.
Dark Ark #1 is definitely the start of something twisted and engrossing. Phenomenal art mixed with a story which radiates anxiety and dread in the best ways possible. It would be foolish not to take the time to experience the Dark Ark.