“Rot World” is the perfect jumping on point for all of you not already reading this book; trust me, I jumped on here. The first issue of “Rot World” plays out in two distinct time periods. The “present” being the world in which Buddy Baker, aka Animal Man, has been transported to, and the “past” one year prior. Animal Man finds himself being transported to a desolate world, in which the Rot has won and the Red has been sequestered in a small plot of land. Meanwhile, Buddy’s wife and children are left unprepared and unprotected in a world where the Rot is growing stronger every day. Lemire writes a haunting story wherein nearly everything good in the world has been corrupted or destroyed. Pugh, Green, Silver, and Kindzierski illustrate a gorgeous book capturing the extent of destruction in the story. 4.5/5
Detective Comics #13 marks the first issue for the new creative team, consisting of John Layman, Jason Fabok, and Jeromy Cox. As long readers of Chew will know, Layman has a very unique way of incorporating humor into his writing, and luckily for us that translates extremely well in this issue. While Tony Daniel’s style of writing was much better suited for Batman, from this first issue it is evident that Layman’s writing is perfect for this title. From the opening sequence where Batman lists out all of the donations Bruce Wayne will be making, with respect to all the damage he does as Batman, to Penguin finally being depicted as a force to be reckoned with, Layman proves that Detective Comics is in good hands. Fabok’s art with Cox’s colors make for a spectacularly gorgeous book. 4.5/5
Oliver Queen’s trip to China comes to an end in a rather unspectacular fashion, which unfortunately describes this entire arc. Ollie, having gone on an extended vacation without telling anyone where he was going, lost control of his company. In doing so, he also lost rights to a specific piece of technology that can “read” a person and provide a precise detailing of their history. Understandably, this isn’t something you’d want to fall into the wrong hands, but that’s really beside the point. The point of this arc is apparently to demonstrate that not only does Ollie not care about his company, but he doesn’t particularly care for anything. He does what he wants, no matter the costs, which essentially just proves that in the five or six years time since Green Arrow #0, he hasn’t really grown all that much. The art in this book tends to reflect the story, in that it’s often chaotic, rushed, and awkward. 2/5
If, for whatever reason, you’ve been avoiding Swamp Thing, then this is the perfect starting point for you. The first 13 issues (including #0) were pretty much an origin story, taking you through Alec Holland’s transformation into Swamp Thing, then introducing the protagonist of “Rot World.” This issue picks up with Swampy being transported one year into the future, to a world where the Rot has won. The green has been cornered into the tiniest of corners, and is being championed by Poison Ivy and Deadman. With Swamp Thing’s world turned inside out, he’s determined to find out how he can fix things, but more importantly (for him at least), he wants to find Abby. The opening chapter of “Rot World” does a tremendous job of introducing this new world, the new problems, but at the same time manages to be more than an introduction. There is a strong balance between information and action, the issue progresses the story forward as it explains what has already happened. Yanick Paquette and Nathan Fairbairn provide amazing layouts, brilliant action, and an overall gorgeous book. 4/5
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