Cave Carson must navigate his emotions while living trees attack. Just another day in the DC Young Animal universe.
The out-there, trippiest, weirdest comic is back this week and if you haven’t started reading it yet you best get the trade paperback recently released. The series has been a wacky, zany, adult themed ride that’s offered a story that’s strange and sometimes incomprehensible. After reading this issue, prepare to have your mind messed with.
So what’s it about?
The official summary reads:
Things aren’t just weird for Team Carson, they’re mega- weird, as their trans-dimensional adventure brings them to a world unlike any they have ever seen before (with or without cybernetic enhancement!), filled with sentient plant life and megafauna. Plus, a new installment of “The Wonderful World of Rocks with Marc Bartow” by Mark Russell (THE FLINTSTONES) and Benjamin Dewey (Autumnlands) and “Bane’s Coloring Corner” by Brandon Bird!
Why does this book matter?
Jon Rivera, Nick Filardi, and Michael Avon Oeming have been making magic with this series and not just in a visual way. The story has been trippy and all kinds of B-movie weird in the best of ways. As if a giant brain villain thingy wasn’t enough, things get trippy with alternate dimensions this week!
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Cave is so so sad.
Cave lost his car–he calls it the Mighty Mole–and he’s super down about it since he has so many memories with the thing (just look above). It’s not helping matters since he and his friends are now trapped on what is most likely a very dangerous planet. In a subtle sort of way Rivera refers to the creatures who bookended the last issue and then all hell breaks loose. Make no mistake, this is a crazy comic with monsters being fought off, mysterious relatives sprouting up, and a cliffhanger that’s got so many unanswered questions you’ll be greatly anticipating the next issue.
This is also an easy to follow issue, at least relatively compared to previous ones. Cave is going through a lot of shit and it only gets laid on thicker with emotional stuff later on in this issue. Plus, the story introduces a classic DC team of robots, which should have DC nerds excited.
Look, I’m starting to sound like a broken record here, but Oeming and Filardi are showing up other artists due to how unique and striking this series is. Every page has a splash, panel, or the overall layout that’s wickedly gorgeous. Take for instance a scene where a tree monster is vanquished; as the leaves fall off the border around the page looks like fall leaves, which then bleeds into a bottom Ben-Day dot background that is black and red. This visual color change seems to suggest life is dying and it works for the scene very well. There’s also some interesting sexual innuendo on the page–unless I’m reading it wrong–that’s fun in an adult sort of way. Needless to say, it’s another element you just don’t see in mainstream comics.
Um, what are we looking at on the right?
It can’t be perfect can it?
The only gripe I had with this issue is how Cave is sad and depressed the whole time. He’s supposed to be a hero–and yes his eye is screwing with him–and instead, he’s a mopey sad sack when his team is most vulnerable. Not very heroic Cave!
Is It Good?
What a great issue. If you respect art and enjoy creators taking chances you gotta read this.