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Comic Book / Welcome to the Jungle

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Welcome to the Jungle is a four-issue prequel miniseries to The Dresden Files written by Jim Butcher and illustrated by Ardian Syaf.

Chicago could hardly be described as a jungle. But Harry Dresden knows that within and under these familiar streets lie a multitude of dangerous creatures — some of them human. When he is called to investigate the brutal death of a security guard at the Lincoln Park Zoo, he finds himself teaming up with one of the local animal experts to find out who—or what—is willing to use black magic to stay on top of the food chain.

Welcome to the Jungle provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: What the perpetrator is trying to do.
  • Atop a Mountain of Corpses: Averted, as Harry eliminates the rawhead-and-bloody-bones before it can advance from piling up murdered pets as food to murdered people.
  • Attack Animal: Moe. In both the forcefully controlled and protecting a human master variants. Even more applicable to the big cats set loose under the villain's control.
  • Black Magic: Practiced by the villains to try to create a new god of witchcraft.
  • Blatant Lies: "We're the police. Anything we do is legal."
  • Body of Bodies: The rawhead.
  • Book Ends: The Big Bad's first and last appearances are as a shadow seen in profile.
  • Cute Clumsy Girl: Will, who is introduced tripping and dropping some paperwork.
  • The Dog Bites Back: In this case, an angry gorilla. An extremely angry gorilla.
  • Duct Tape for Everything: Also for all your wizardry needs, like keeping the small physical components of a tracking spell stuck together.
  • Escort Mission: Harry, being chivalrous to a fault, takes it upon himself to protect Will when it's clear she's become a target.
  • Exactly What I Aimed At: Harry's desperate bolt of energy whips past Rawhead and Bloody Bones to knock over an electrical pylon and fry the creature on the railroad tracks. Later, he misses the hag he was apparently aiming at—but hits a support pillar with enough force to bring the tunnel ceiling down on her ugly head.
  • Gender-Blender Name: Harry's assistant in this case is a zookeeper named Will. Short for Wilhelmina.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: The dismemberment of a couple of hags is shown only in shadow.
  • Hell Hound: A supernatural black dog attacks Harry as he's almost pieced things together.
  • Killer Gorilla: Averted. The initial suspect is a male gorilla named Moe, and it’s stated that he’s territorial regarding his family unit, but he’s gentle with the zoo employees. That said, he’s not happy when he sees a hag murder the chief researcher and threatening Will, and rips it to pieces when Harry lets it out.
  • Logical Weakness: The Big Bad and co. have tough skin which makes them Immune to Bullets. Once the skin is removed, say burned off, their fleshy inner organs are a lot more vulnerable.
  • Made of Plasticine: To be fair, if a gorilla wants to rip you apart, you will come apart.
  • Mirror Monster: The Black Dog gets into the Blue Beetle using the rear-view mirror.
  • Muggles Do It Better: Another classic Dresden comeback:
    Hag: I've taken your rod! I've taken your staff!
    Harry: You should've taken my gun.
  • No Body Left Behind: Supernatural creatures, once killed, dissolve into a sort of ectoplasm and fade away.
  • Our Monsters Are Different: Harry goes down a list of supernatural beasties while thinking about who could have committed the murder, but none of them seem to fit. The perpetrator was a hag with, as Bob puts it, skin like tank armor, more magic than Harry, enough strength to rip a human limb from limb and sharp, venomous claws. That said, it doesn't prove much of a match for an angry gorilla.
  • Papa Wolf: Reese, the head of the zoo, towards Moe.
  • Power Trio: The three hags make an evil variant.
  • Perfect Poison: Averted. While the Poisoned Weapons the villain uses are deadly, their venom isn't strong enough to instantly kill either Harry or Will, and both of them are fine after some medical treatment.
  • Perma-Stubble: Harry's chin is in fine form here.
  • Shout-Out
  • Symbol Swearing: In the narration:
    "Three of them. I'm *@&$ed."
  • This Bear Was Framed: The comic starts with a zoo security guard being found dead outside the gorilla pen, with blood on one of the gorillas. Finding it odd that a murderous animal would, after breaking out of its pen and killing a man, then proceed to go back into its cage and re-secure the doors, Murphy calls in Dresden to figure out what really happened.
  • This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!:
    Harry: Welcome to the jungle, bitch.
  • Weaponized Animal
  • Wicked Witch: The old model. A coven of Hecatean hags makes an appearance and one of them is the Big Bad.
  • Your Size May Vary: Will's height varies wildly. One frame shows her coming up to Harry's nose, which would put her at around 6'3" to 6'4". Another frame on the next page, which also shows her standing right next to Harry, has the top of her head barely come up to his shoulders, which would put her height somewhere around 5'8" to 5'10".