Red Rot Rising
Maxine's become one with the Red. And Buddy's not the only one who's taken notice of his baby girl, enter the Hunters Three.
Hope Foreman keeps delivering awesome covers like this as the book goes on.
Foreman and Kindzierski continue to impress me highly on the art (though it's not without flaw). Foreman delivers some very strong story telling via body language, emotive acting, and some visually unique and interesting lay out choices. I especially liked the two page spread of The Red and the distorted perspective used. And when it's time to deliver the more disturbing imagery he does so 100%.
Lemire's writing on this book has really impressed me thus far. The way he writes Buddy's family is pitch perfect. Their individual responses to Maxine's new abilities are totally believable and within their characters. I especially love Ellen's reaction to "Ms. Pickles". And Buddy's quarterbacking of how to deal with the zombie pets perfectly expressed just how weird the Baker household can get.
The confrontation with the neighbor was a good way to give us a peak at Maxine's powers and gave a sense of how the regular citizens of the DCnU view metahumans.
Buddy's parting with Ellen was really heartfelt and truly had an emotional impact upon me as I read it. Lemire writes a very sentimental scene without crossing over into melodramatic waters. And Foreman's character work really shine's through here.
Buddy and Maxine's travel to the heart of the Red had some great dialogue and the interaction with the animals and how Foreman visually displayed it was great.
The Hunters Three are shaping up to make some very, horrifying grotesque villains.
While I love Foreman's work and feel like he's the perfect artists for this book there were certainly spotty moments in his pencils this issue. The most glaring weakness in his art is his lack of or indistinct backgrounds. He nails the sequences in the Red and that kind of detail work he should make a priority throughout the book. For example, when Buddy and Maxine arrive at "The Tree" the background is all but nonexistent, such a wasted opportunity there to build a lush world.
There were some moments where the character's faces had exaggerated expressions, even when the script didn't call for it.
While Maxine is a good way for Lemire to give the audience information on the Red, but the all knowing child avatar's a bit of a tired trope. Hopefully he'll do something novel with this concept in future issues.
Lemire and Foreman prove that their superb #1 was not a fluke. Animal Man's shaping up to be one of the best new series of the year and is certainly one of top offerings of the DCnU. Animal Man once again show's the potential of these rebooted titles when the creators let their imaginations run free. Animal man has an intriguing story, compelling characters, and great art. And these elements make this series a definite buy.