REVIEW: Devolution #1 (of 5)

writer: Rick Remender
artist: Jonathan Wayshak, Jordan Boyd

Oh dear.  It looks like the human race has been caught out by a man-made virus (again?), created to destroy our need to believe in religion, which it does in essence through mutation of body rather than of spirit.  Devolution, a five-part series from Dynamite Comics, which gives us a destroyed world, with destroyed human societies struggling against the new old threat of humans and animals, devolved into their respective previous and also mutated versions.

Raja is a young lady of destiny, even if her attempt to be so is no more than to spite her “believe in you” missing father.  With this being the first issue, we get an introduction to this world from a couple of differing sources; Raja and her “world is shit” rhetoric, Jana and her beau to Gil the leader of a human settlement which appears to be the confluence that brings all the characters together.

Comics veteran Rick Remender is on story duty, painting an apocalyptic world that, despite the sum of its inspired parts, is just different enough to seem fresh.  The history elements are done quickly and without preamble, expecting the reader to just accept it without too many questions.  This style allows Remender to keep things on the back shelf whilst world creating.  The dialogue is solid throughout the book, each character acts in a way that you kind of expect, Gil the bully boss of the settlement for example.

Johnathan Wayshak is the interior artist, producing some fine work in the desolate environments.  Stylistically, his work can be quite angular in places, but is variable throughout the book, allowing for the art to match the character, rather than forcing a character to suit a style.  The result is a mix of looks that work well when the characters are in an individual setting but can be slightly jarring when the characters interact. Colorist Jordan Boyd does a superb job with the environments that are in play.  As we are talking about the art, check out the fantastic Jae Lee cover!

For all the influences that seem to be the inspiration for the book, and there are plenty,  Remender does a great job of making it interesting.  If you are a fan of people fighting to survive the hardships of their desolate worlds, by all means give this book a try.

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