TITLE: Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew! vol. 1, issue #1ue 1
YEAR: March 1981
COMPANY: DC Comics
Written by Roy Thomas
Penciler: Scott Shaw
Inker: Bob Smith
Letterer: Todd Klein
Colorist: Carl Safford
Editor: Dick Giordano
When I started mycomicbookjourney.com, my original pick to kick things off was “Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew!”.
Growing up, I bought every issue, read each comic many times. So badly that since then that I had purchase a full run of the comic book series five times. Twice that I read and carried around with me that they got tattered, one that stayed in my box, another for my sister when she was young and reading and the fourth time, just for my young son when he began reading. It became a favorite of his and I couldn’t help but share this comic book, it’s how much I loved it. I had to purchase it again in Showcase format and picked up the other comic book mini-series and issues that came years after.
It was very interesting because I remember hoping this series would receive an animation adaptation. It would have been perfect, but unfortunately, it never happened.
And then I remember seeing the characters decades later in an episode of “Robot Chicken” and I was shocked and I often wondered, “were other children into ‘Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew’ like I was into it?”.
Needless to say, I absolutely loved the series and surprised it took me this long to post about it because it would have been my first choice and first post, if it hadn’t been in the bottom comic box that I had to remove many other boxes to get access to them.
But for those who are not familiar with “Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew!”, the group first made their appearance in “The New Teen Titans” issue #16.
In fact, to understand how Superman managed to get into the world of Captain Carrot’s alternative Earth, you will need to read the story in “The New Teen Titans” first, before reading this issue #1.
But “Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew!” was inspired by the golden age comic books, may it be Mighty Mouse (Terrytoon), Super Duck (Archie), Super Rabbit (Timely/Marvel), Supermouse and Hoppy the Marvel Bunny and other superhero animals that emerged in the ’40s and ’50s, as Roy Thomas grew up reading those comic books, for me, I grew up reading “Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew!” and it was so fresh and unique that I absolutely loved the series.
Superman ends up in an alternative universe, meanwhile fragments of meteorite manage to land or hit nearby those who have received super powers.
Captain Carrot’s true persona is comic book writer Rodney Rabbit. A meek guy who ate carrots that were affected by the meteorite which turns him into the powerful leader of the group.
Pig Iron is the metallic hulking and strongest member of the group. He is Peter Porkchops, a meek pig who worked at a Steel Mill and was conked in the head by a meteorite, causing him to fall in goop which turned him into Pig Iron.
Alley-Kat-Abra is Felina Furr, a martial arts instructor who reads mystical books in her part time. While meditating it landed in in her tabbachi and gave her magical powers.
Fastback is Timmy Joe Terrapin, a sloooow fireman who had a meteorite land on him and now he has been gifted with super speed.
Rubberduck is Byrd Rentals, a movie star who has the power to stretch his body into any shape. He was in his hot tub being interviewed by Rova Barkitt when the meteorite came down on his hot tub. Meanwhile, Rova was hit by a fragment and became the superhero, Yankee Poodle. She has the power of animal magnetism as one had can repel with stars and the other can attract by stripes.
With Captain Carrot needing a team to save Superman who has been kidnapped by some entity in space, the team join forces as “Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew!” to take on crime and also criminals who were also affected by the meteor fragments.
Overall, if you want a fun superhero comic book series featuring an alternative world featuring animals and not humans but with the talented Roy Thomas writing and the amazing artwork of Scott Shaw, definitely check out “Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew!”.
And if you happen to visit a Comic Con or comic book convention, definitely take the time to visit Scott Shaw’s booth! (A photo of Scott by my friend Derek Orchard at Silicon Valley Comic Con)