After first adapting the movie for a tabloid format special, Kirby launched a monthly series to explore some of the ideas of the movie with his own unique flavour.
The first half of the story goes into the prehistoric past and explores the life of “Beast-Killer”, an early man who was given an evolutionary push from the mysterious monolith, gradually making more and more sophisticated weapons to aid in his hunting. We then leap forward to the exciting future of 2001 and astronaut Woodrow Decker, whose ancestor was Beast-Killer, in the asteroid belt.
Decker and another astronaut are stranded on an asteroid with various mysterious artifacts and a strange beast. Decker is then taken by the Monolith on a cosmic journey, ages rapidly and turns into a “New Seed”, one of the flying space babies from the end of the movie, going off to explore the cosmos. Pretty much a straight variation of the story from the movie, fortunately Kirby would inject more of his own ideas in future issues. This one does have some great artwork, in particular the prehistoric stuff (a great peek ahead to his DEVIL DINOSAUR run).
Kirby also provides a text page, “The New Seed”, where he talks about a few of the ideas that the mysterious concept evokes in him and that he plans to explore.
Cover and story inked by Mike Royer.