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. Did we miss your favorite books this week? Well. This is where you need to be.
Written by James Tynion IV.
Art by Eryk Donovan.
Colors by Dee Cunniffe.
Letters by Jim Campbell.
James Tynion IV and Eryk Donovan explore the evils of big pharma and how the consequences of a little unchecked privilege can snowball to epic proportions. Sounds heavy, but when told through an apocalyptic sci-fi horror lens, it all comes together with just the right combination of terror and excitement.
Savvy imagery of present day problems anchor Eugenic in relevance, while Tynion’s yarn spins out of control towards a cataclysmic end. Donovan depicts protests outside the clinic akin to anti-abortion gatherings, complete with picket signs of vivid gore. Somewhere in the south, the sick have been lynched by men in white sheets. And all this panic has been brought to you by a mad scientist who’s good intentions have mutated into something awful for everyone.
While the media struggles to paint a picture of unity born of shared tragedy, humans gotta human, and the world descends into chaos and disarray. But wait – there’s finally new life out there. Babies are being born again, thanks to an emerging vaccine, though they may not be quite what we bargained for. They’ve got teeth. Lots of teeth. Their faces are upside down. They could be the new common denominator of humanity, eradicating trivialities like race, gender and uniqueness.
Everything gets a bit cattywompus in the America of the future, but we have been warned how history oft repeats itself. Beyond its mad science there’s unfortunately not much about Eugenic that seems completely impossible. Do yourself a favor and dive into this monster of a cautionary tale.
8 out of 10
Written and Illustrated by Dan Panosian.
Letters by Pat Brosseau.
Let’s face it – we experience an onslaught of emotion when we see the words “Las Vegas” of late. Is now really the time to dive into a comic about the place? Short answer: When Dan Panosian is at the helm, yes.
Slots reintroduces us to Sin City’s baseline of over-fraught and overwrought chicanery. It opens with Stanley, a rakish protagonist defiling the trust of America’s most sacred institution – the diner. There is no greater touchstone of humanity than that which slings hash browns to the masses 24/7. But with just the right key and a pinch of salt, Stanley breaks the unspoken code and eagerly exposes himself to a world of trouble.
We don’t know where he’s going yet. We know he’s got pre-existing beef in this town and he wants to bury it with his fists, and in a market saturated with the next big thing, it’s possible an old-school powerhouse can slip in under the radar.
There’s a sinister undercurrent coursing through Slot, and Panosian’s pages set a nostalgic tone. If you’ve read Hunter S. Thompson or indulged in a southwestern stag do, you may feel like you’ve been here before. But Panosian declares his own dusty trailhead, luring you outside the city proper, obliging you to remember that Stanley has hinted that it’s not all just smoke and mirrors.
The characters we meet along the way are collected and shelved like cards to be played as their usefulness arises. There’s a generational thing going on, but it’s not quite clear how the children relate to each other, if at all. There’s a right hook here and a clock to the jaw there, and you can’t help but think of it as Panosian delivering a one-two punch, not so much saying “look what I can do,” as declaring “Hey! This is fun!” There’s so much to learn by reading on.
8 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.