King Kong (1991) #1

From Wikizilla, the kaiju encyclopedia
Jump to navigationJump to search
King Kong (1991)
Issue #1
Issue #2
"Denham's Quest"
The cover of issue #1 by Dave Stevens
Story by Edgar Wallace, Merian C. Cooper, Delos W. Lovelace
Written by Donald Simpson
Art by Donald Simpson
Edits by Gary Groth, Larry Pike
Design by Dale Yarger
King Kong 1991 Logo.png
King Kong (1991)

"Denham's Quest" is the first issue of the 1991 comic series King Kong. It was published in February 1991.


Aboard the Vastator in a New Jersey harbor along the Hudson River, Captain Englehorn and first mate Jack Driscoll await the arrival of filmmaker Carl Denham, who is still in the city trying to find a lead actress for his movie, and they are becoming impatient. As the last of the sailors arrive—three times the number a ship of the Vastator's size would usually carry—Denham is in Lower Manhattan, outraged that his agent Mr. Weston has not secured him an actress. Evidently, no legitimate actress would agree to work for a director with such a reputation for recklessness. Furthermore, Denham's secretiveness about his current endeavor has scared away every agent. Denham is admittedly loathe to include a female star in his picture, but laments that the studios have advised him to add some romance to boost public reception. Weston advises the director to drop his insistence on delivering real nature scenes and to instead make a more traditional picture with sets and a script, causing Denham to storm out, ordering his assistant Wally to take his equipment to the ship, while he goes out to search the city for a lead.

Denham stops for cigarettes at a local vendor named Roy, lamenting his rotten luck, when the shopkeeper captures a would-be thief trying to steal an apple. The woman who wanted to steal Roy's fruit faints after Denham pays Roy to leave her alone, and he takes her to a restaurant. Her name is revealed to be Ann Darrow, and she used to do work as an extra before the film industry moved to Hollywood. As inspired as he is desperate, Denham offers her the role, and with nothing in her life to stay in town for, she accepts. Despite a brief mishap with Driscoll, Ann is quite comfortable on the ship as it crosses the Pacific Ocean. During the journey, she begins a flirtation with Driscoll, and becomes friends with the sailor Lumpy and his monkey Ignatz. Denham teases Jack for falling for Ann, likening his situation to his film's "Beauty and the Beast" motif, before taking the actress to do some test shots.

Now far west of Sumatra, Englehorn and Driscoll finally learn from Denham about their destination: Skull Island. Denham explains what little about its history he knows, and of Kong, a figure Englehorn recognizes from Malay folklore. Denham explains his knowledge of a great wall built on the island to keep Kong out, and explains his mission to film the creature, whatever it may be. Driscoll is worried by the prospect, but Ann is excited by the possibilities. The next day they reach the shores of Skull Island. Despite the sounds of a native ritual reaching them on their ship, Denham immediately takes the crew ashore to start filming. Twenty sailors accompany him, and they find a native village deserted, as they are all at the ceremony they heard from the ship. They soon happen upon the ape-centric ritual, and are quickly spotted. While the natives are displeased to be interrupted, they soon spy Ann, and offer six of their women in exchange for the "woman of gold." Tensions rise when they refuse the offer, and the crew returns to the Vastator to plan their next move, promising the natives to return the following day. That night, Jack expresses his discomfort with the situation. Ann, while frightened, has a stronger sense of adventure, and scolds Jack for trying to bodyguard her. He is called away to speak with Denham and the captain to discuss trading with the islanders when they hear the drums start up again. Ann, while speaking to her new friend, the sailor Lumpy's monkey Iggy, is taken away by kidnappers from the island. Lumpy then comes to investigate Iggy's screeching, finding a native bracelet in his paws. Lumpy takes it to the captain, and it is confirmed that while the watchman slept, Ann was taken. They quickly mount a rescue party as Ann is hastily sent beyond the island's gigantic gates by nervous islanders, hoping Kong is not displeased with the tardiness of his offering. They pray to Kong for their bountiful hunting and fishing, for the fertility of the land and of their women, and as they chant and strike their gong, the slavering beast-god Kong arrives to take Ann away.

Jack can only watch in terror as she is taken into his mighty hand and the monster roars into the night sky.




Weapons, vehicles, and races


  • New Jersey
    • Hudson River
  • Manhattan, New York
  • Skull Island
    • Skull Mountain
  • Panama (mentioned)
    • Panama Canal (mentioned)
  • Hawaii (mentioned)
  • Japan (mentioned)
  • Borneo (mentioned)
  • Sumatra (mentioned)



Showing 1 comments. When commenting, please remain respectful of other users, stay on topic, and avoid role-playing and excessive punctuation. Comments which violate these guidelines may be removed by administrators.

Loading comments...
Era Icon - RKO.png
Era Icon - King Kong.png