Marvel/Star Comics (April 1988)WRITER: Michael Gallagher PENCILER: Dave Manak INKER/COLORIST: Marie Severin LETTERERS: Oakley & Parker ASSISTANT EDITOR: Laura Hitchcock EDITOR: Sid Jacobson
Obviously based on the sitcom created by Paul Fusco, the comic series tended to follow a three-story format. The first story usually involved some Melmacian device or power (I’ll get into that next time with issue #4), the second a tale from Gordon’s days in the Orbit Guard (based on the animated series, see my DVD review at The Clutter Reports), and the third closer to the usual show antics but with the benefits of being in a comic. It’s not really an anthology so with the exception of the one Annual I own I’ll review it like a regular comic. The covers on the earlier issues in my collection were the victim of my filing system at the time, so I picked up the images from those issue from Comic Covers.com.
In the first story, ALF’s flying belt ends up in Brian’s schoolbag and falls into the hands of his science teacher. In the Melmac story, ALF tells the story of when he went undercover with a biker gang who bets over a game of jacks. The third story has the Tanners taking their alien roommate to a game preserve where the big cats put him into a feeding frenzy.
What they got right: While later issues will show how the series formula went wrong, I did like seeing some of the space gear of an Orbit Guard member and like the cartoon I liked most of the Melmacian adventures.
What they got wrong: That would be the third story. I haven’t been to an animal park since I could count my age on two hands but I doubt the felines are all in one section and all the other animals down another trail. Besides, you’d think the Tanners would know better than to take ALF down the big cats trail. It’s like taking a food addict to an all-you-can-eat buffet.
Recommendation: As you’ll see in later reviews, Gallagher had a habit of all but ignoring the shows in favor of his own stories. While this was good or bad depending on the stories it worked in this issue. Still, unless you were a fan of the show, you may not have any interest in this comic.
Up Next: Best Scene of the Week in Sunday’s Weekly Wrap-Up