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Chew #1

June 5, 2009

Chew #1 (Image Comics)
By John Layman & Rob Guillory

Image Comics has really been pushing this book with previews and press all over the place, and putting the first few pages in the back of The Walking Dead a few weeks ago was enough to make me check out this first issue. I’m really glad I did. Chew is one of the most original ideas for a comic book I’ve seen in a very long time. Set in a world where bird flu fears have led to the banning of (and subsequent black market in) poultry products, Chew is the tale of Tony Chu, a cop with the bizarre power to absorb psychic impressions of the past of any piece of food he eats. While the potential in this sort of power is there, the problems definitely outweigh it. Can you imagine having to relive the slaughter of the cow that makes up your hamburger — or worse, find out what really went into your hot dog? Chu and his partner are undercover, staking out a poultry speakeasy, when a few clients show up that are about to complicate Tony’s life exponentially. This issue is mostly set-up, getting Chu where he’s probably going to spend the bulk of this series, but it’s great set up. It explains the world in general and Tony Chu’s situation in particular perfectly well, and it sets things up for an intriguing story down the line. Rob Guillory‘s art compliments the story nicely, creating a comic really unlike anything else I’ve ever read. If you think there’s nothing new in comics, think again — you just need to know where to look.
Rating: 10/10

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