AfterShock’s battle-ready ‘Animosity’ #12 oozes with foreboding
By Brandy Dykhuizen. Our Week In Review sums up our weekly comic book coverage while taking time for a new review or two before it’s all over. This week: ‘Animosity’ #12, ‘Gravetrancers’ #2, and ‘Infinite Loop: Nothing but the Truth’ #4.
Written by Marguerite Bennett.
Art by Rafael de Latorre.
Colors by Rob Schwager.
Letters by Marshall Dillon.
The end of the bees means the end of the world, ya’ll. People have been droning on about it for years. The supercolony at the Old Gold Dam is finally facing the farmers head-to-head, with no pleasant outcome in sight. If they win, humans lose. If they lose, the humans still lose. Farmers, of all people, really should have been paying attention when their primary pollinators first caught glimpse of trouble.
The main drama within Marguerite Bennett’s pages is bound to culminate in a pretty gritty battle scene, but there are also plenty of foreshadowing details in Animosity #12 to keep us guessing what’s around the next few corners. As the bees prepare for war, Sandor’s skeletons are trying to jump out of the closet, in the form of hidden health issues and a big bad secret from his past. Hints of dirty dealings keep things tense, but the eve of war is hardly the time to squabble over former misdeeds.
The entire book has a very foreboding, battle-ready feel. Rafael de Latorre’s rainstorm scratches and cuts its way down each page, setting up yet another obstacle for all sides to endure. His breathtaking portrayal of the bees taking up arms is electrifying and a little disorienting, much like it would appear through the eyes of a young girl like Jesse, who’s just trying her best to be brave and make sense of all this mess.
The bees are pretty scary. The thought of a swarm coming at you wielding syringes and pushpins is unsettling to say the least. Still, you root for them, even though you know they’d never extend the favor your way. Animosity continues to be the whole package – gripping story, beautiful art, riveting colors. It’s definitely hard to turn away from this series.
8.5 out of 10
Black Mask Studios/$3.99
Written by M. L. Miller.
Art by James Michael Whynot.
Colors by Dee Cunniffe.
Letters by Jim Campbell.
Death is one hell of a drug, as the creepos who run Burwood Funeral Parlor and Memorial Park will happily show you. M. L. Miller runs gruesome snippets of this bizarre history of humans inhaling their deceased through the undertakings of a psychotic family of morticians. Highly creative in its gore, James Michael Whynot’s artwork leaves you unsettled but not put off, unsure of how much to take at face value and which bits to chalk up to epic hallucinations.
With all the trips and dips into the horror of the strung-out human mind, it can be easy to forget half of the story. Between the family’s ghastly misdeeds and the drug-induced panic endured by a pair of siblings looking for closure, the potential hero, a rookie cop, can get a little buried. But when you’re deep in the middle of one of Whynot’s visual trips, you can be forgiven for losing the plot. His panels grip you with terror and force you to live right in that moment. I’m guessing this is what a bad trip looks like.
The more we learn of the goings-on at Burwood, the more questions we have. Surely few outsiders, if any, will make it out alive. How much of what transpires in the catacombs is real? What is the family doing with all those corpses? And what in god’s name is in those syringes snikt-ing out of that bearded brother’s knuckles? This one’s a wild ride. I get the feeling there will be no calm before the final bloody storm.
7.5 out of 10
Written by Pierrick Colinet and Elsa Charretier.
Art by Daniele Di Nicuolo and Elsa Charretier.
Colors by Sarah Stern.
Letters by Ed Dukeshire.
The wrap-up to this sometimes frenetic, always entertaining series provides some closure to this book’s big questions, while leaving the door ajar for future visits to The Infinite Loop somewhere down the road.
Teddy, always the hero, freed the good people of Prosperity from the headsets that rule their lives, to a less than grateful response. After being thrust into an addictive, self-validating worldview that doesn’t exactly lend itself to personal growth, the populous would rather stick to their echo chambers than see the truth. Huh. Who knew?
The themes that make this comic a great read occasionally come across as a bit on-the-nose (“‘Middle ground?’ What America are you living in?”). At the end of the day, this probably only serves to make our own echo chambers more satisfying, but let’s not get too meta here. This book has some darn good points, after all.
Pierrick Colinet and Elsa Charretier cultivate a beautiful LGBTQ love story in between all the hubbub. Teddy and Ano finally get to be together, at least for a little while. And, out of society’s ashes, a family has risen with little Columbia. Once we are all controlled by headsets disseminating misinformation, the strong of will shall survive and teach the younger generation how to fight the power. It’s a terrifying and uplifting modern day fairy tale.
Daniele di Nicuolo’s art and Sarah Stern’s colors create a clear world amidst the chaos. It makes for an accessible rea, even while our own world may or may not be falling apart. Infinite Loop: Nothing but the Truth turned out to be a terrific little miniseries. Exciting from front to back, it stayed true to its themes, and provided a bit of light in dark times.
7.5 out of 10
From earlier this week —
What books did YOU read this week? We want to know! Tell us about those feelings of yours in the comments section below.