CHEW 53

CHEW #53
Written by John Layman and Illustrated by Rob Guillory
Published by Image Comics

Reviewed by Avril Brown

In the words of Paneer Sharma, the Executive Director of NASA and deceased Toni Chu’s devoted fiancé, “Holy shit!” This brilliant and compassionate man has taken his newfound power and used it for good: he’s cleaned out financial corruption and rebuilt the long range telescopes, which in turn brought expletive-inducing information back to planet Earth. The sky writing is visible once again, this time surrounding a distant planet known as Artocarpus-3. Now according to Google (which is never wrong), Artocarpus is a genus of various fruit bearing tree and shrub species. A connection to the space trippy gallsaberry fruit seems likely, n’est pas?

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Speaking of parlaying Francais, Paris is where we find Mason Savoy and Tony Chu, out for a café and a croissant to discuss the past, the future and a possible present partnership. Alas, when in the presence of food powers, there’s no such thing as a simple conversation.

Enter the new power: a victulocusire, someone who can psychically transport his fellow diners to the place, and even time, of their meal’s origin. Mason has a point to make so he asks his fellow foodie to dine with him and Chu at the Bon Vivants, familiar territory for FDA Agent Chu. Thanks to their victuals, however, the familiarity fades as they soon find themselves in the prehistoric age bearing witness to some rather advanced avian ancestors. Mason has a theory of how these creatures are connected with the various troubles of today, and he wants to team up with Chu once again.

In some ways these two powerful and intelligent men are too alike, especially when it comes to certain volatile character flaws. Chu carries a grudge with a vice-like grip, and Savoy has a Mike Tyson level explosive temper. Another confrontation is fast approaching, and this reader has a bad feeling about the likely fallout.

CHEW is doing an amazing job of coming around full circle; the writing, the art, the storytelling in general, all massively entertaining to begin with, have improved with each panel. These last several issues are bound to be bittersweet, knowing there’s more pain and death to come for these fascinating characters, along with the conclusions and revelations we fans are desperate to experience. Can’t have one without the other, I suppose, and if there’s one thing CHEW fans can do is take a punch to the heart and still beg for more.

CHEW 52

CHEW #52
Written by John Layman and Illustrated by Rob Guillory
Published by Image Comics

Reviewed by Avril Brown

“The Pope has converted.” Only in CHEW, man, only in CHEW. In this plot-advancing issue readers are not only treated to some interesting background info on Mason, but we also bore witness to the latest twist in the long term plans of the Church of the Immaculate Ova. Now that she has His Holiness backing her up, the High Priestess Alani Adobo is on quite the roll…and the final page gives a clear reason for her determination.

chew 52 cover

The sneak peek into Mason’s history gives us confirmation of what many CHEW readers already knew: that he has a very strong personal motivation for discerning the truth behind the avian flu. The origin and meaning behind the flu outbreak is shrouded in secrecy and corruption on all levels of the government, but with a tiny nibble taken out of the cognominutus Carlton Cardamon, a man who can read menus in every language, a ray of light is being shed. Poor Carlton’s power was also his undoing, as he could read the alien language which mysteriously appeared in the sky, but his brain couldn’t deal.

There is still the matter of Amelia’s foreshadowed demise, which seems to be confirmed with angel Toni’s commiseration over ‘poor Amelia’s’ fate. Methinks it has something to do with the vast amounts of the freaky gallsaberry fruit she’s been snacking on while she writes her otherworldly bestselling novels (or are they biographies?). I’m sure whatever it is I won’t see coming, because CHEW is many things but predictable is not one of them.