I love Brian Wood. There, I’ve said it. He has written two of my favorite “after the world goes to poop” stories: DMZ and The Massive. He has a way of digging deeper into the characters than seems possible. Every action they take helps refine your idea of them, and the roots of their passions are laid bare as the book continues. The captain is Callum Israel, a former mercenary and current (mostly) pacifist. Mag, another former mercenary and reluctant pacifist, and Mary, the woman without a past, are the other officers. It is incredibly compelling to watch as these morally grey characters attempt to carve out an ethical path in a morally empty world.
The art, by Kristian Donaldson or Garry Brown depending on which issue you’re reading, is great, and Dave Stewart’s colors are masterful. The style is sort of matter-of-fact, which helps ground the story, and before you know it you have completely bought into this new world. The art captures everything from blistering action to quiet introspection perfectly.
The smartest thing this book does is keep the plot manageable. There are huge and important things happening in the world, but all our focus is on a group of environmentalists who are trying to figure out how to fit in this new reality. They have already lost the war; this graphic novel asks how they get on with their lives.
For those of you that like good things, this is one you should read. There are interesting characters navigating a totally different ocean than the one they started in. The story, art, and concept are head and shoulders above your average comic. Seriously, go and get this one.
Five Lovable Ex-Mercenaries out of Five