Brandon Borzelli's Geek Goggle Reviews
Remender, Wayshak & Boyd
"Devolution" is the latest launch from Rick Remender that delves into the doomed future of mankind. Remender has a knack for writing a great first issue to unveil his high concept and this issue is no exception. Basically, the idea is that a government created a weapon that would reduce the part of the human brain that believes in God(s). This has a bad effect and the population de-evolves, along with plants and animals. Chaos ensues. The comic is a very strong first issue and is a series to keep an eye on.
The comic follows Raja as she helps to introduce the reader to the dangers of being out in the open. She recounts how her brother died and seems to have the ability to handle the cavemen that now inhabit the Earth. It's a good introduction.
Next, we get a miniature civilization, and a couple that sneaks away to have a little nocturnal fun. We soon learn that the dangers exist everywhere and we find out why they needed to leave the walls to seek out some loving.
Raja eventually wanders into this camp and things get out of hand. The comic ends with a space element as it appears they have a small narration spot where they are the eye in the sky watching some of the comic’s events unfold.
The comic is good. It relies heavily on narration to get the high concept out there but it would have been difficult to push that out via dialogue. Perhaps a letter in the back from Remender would have worked. The book moves along nicely in some spots and definitely has a good idea at work and a couple of very strong characters that can carry this book.
There are some odd points in the comic book though. For example, Raja recounts how her brother died, but later she states how she hasn't come across another person (not a caveman, a person) yet. I suppose her brother doesn’t count. Also, Raja leaves her horse out in the open when she goes into the store in the beginning. Did she believe the horse wouldn’t attract the cavemen? It seems like it definitely would.
The comic book has very good art. Dynamite has a tendency to coat the pencils in ink. The result has a very sketchy look to it and this book simply doesn't present itself like a typical Remender comic. Generally, his comics have artists that have a painted look that definitely captures the imagination. This book has good artwork, but feels like a departure from the science fiction story being told here. Overall, I enjoyed the way the book’s visuals tell their own story.
"Devolution" is the latest flawed-future comic from Rick Remender. Life has returned to the days of cavemen except for a precious few that are fighting to survive and live by their own rules. The comic is a great start to the high concept, but does use heavy narration to explain the current state of things. The artwork is also good, but seems to be so heavily inked. Overall, this is a book to pick up and a series to keep your eye on. Remender has a history of ripping apart his characters and I suspect this comic will be no different.
4 out of 5 Geek Goggles