“Paleo” Isn’t Extinct Yet

After a long hiatus, the series Paleo returns in webcomic form

The cover of Paleo #2 by Jim Lawson
The cover of Paleo #2 by Jim Lawson Image courtesy Jim Lawson and Colin Panetta

When I wanted to review Jim Lawson’s influential dinosaur comic series Paleo last year, I had to track down the paperback anthology of the first six installments and the miscellaneous issues. The books were hard to find and only available as rare, used copies. But, fortunately for pen and ink dinosaur fans, Lawson has now revived his Cretaceous series for free on the web.

For those unfamiliar with the comic, Paleo is an anthology of stories about dinosaurs that once roamed Cretaceous North America. Huge tyrannosaurs and sickle-clawed dromaeosaurs are the unquestionable stars of the series, but Lawson has picked various protagonists through the issues–from the dome-headed Stegoceras to a Mesozoic dragonfly. And while (thankfully) the dinosaurs don’t talk, Lawson gives each Cretaceous creature a personality and set of particular motivation. Paleo is like Walking With Dinosaurs if we could get inside the dinosaurs’ heads.

According to the site’s intro post, Paleo: The Webcomic will cover the entire run of the original series and the “Loner” storyline and include previously unpublished art. Lawson intends to add a page to the site twice a week, and all of them can be viewed on the iPhone, to boot. There’s already a good deal of material to check out–Issue 1 is already posted with Issue 2 well on its way. It’s great to revisit the Mesozoic through Lawson’s work again, and I look forward to seeing some of his untold tales from the latest Cretaceous.

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