It’s a shame that there isn’t a current collection of this series in print at the moment, partly because I just love dinosaurs and want to make people buy dinosaur comics but mostly because of Bissette’s artwork. These aren’t the hardest books to find though so hunting all four issues down shouldn’t be a huge task and you shouldn’t have to spend too much past cover price for them. In fact you can probably easily find some of them in quarter bins, but if you did have to drop an extra buck or two above cover price they are well worth it. I would say no more than $5ea (if even that much), because anything past that and you’re being taken for a ride.
Tyrant follows the life of a T-Rex with amazingly detailed artwork and vivid storytelling. The series often tangents to the lives of other dinosaurs as their paths intersect, the first issue focusing on the mother T-Rex laying her eggs and her ominous scream disrupting the lives of other creatures. The series does a fantastic job of pacing the life cycle, offering innovative layouts and insights. Issue three spends the entire time inside the T-Rex egg going through all the stages of development and the eventual hatching. That could get old fast but Bissette also knows the perfect time to break back into a different narrative focus, flipping the story focus to other predators and prey and their struggles to survive.
Bissette’s art is intricate and lush in its detail without sacrificing any sense of draftsmanship or storytelling. Unique paneling choices and his use of space also keep the story vibrant and very organic, giving the series a very strong sense of style and character not found in a lot of current comics on the market. Tyrant is such a beautiful piece of work that it could have stood strongly as a silent comic, but Bissette’s narration is actually perfect for the style of the visual storytelling and doesn’t hinder the book by any means.
The single issues also offer up some great letter pages as well as some reviews and recommendations for other similar material. Any potential future collection of Tyrant would probably leave these pages out, so searching out the single issues has some extra merit. Plus the individual covers are beautiful and striking, so once you see them it will be hard to say no.