Important Note Dept: As you can probably guess, I’ve been a bit busy with Real Life(TM) this autumn, and while I’ve been productive at many things, I sure as hell have not been productive at blogging—I’ve been reading at a glacial pace, which caused my writing to lag as well since I need to, y’know, read things before I can review them. Rather than disappoint everyone with silence, instead I’ll just post reviews of things most of you don’t care about: graphic novel reviews and art posts! I have a bunch of short graphic novel reviews stockpiled on Goodreads and elsewhere, and some half-completed art posts I can finish up. What a time to be alive!
A decent werewolf/horror comic about a small Mexican family caught between the Mexican-Arizona border. A famine caused by Blackwell Industries has been driving the area’s inhabitants to cross the border illegally, where they confront not just angry rednecks and border patrol agents, but walk straight into the jaws of death: a band of werewolves runs amok, unleashing carnage in their wake. Diego Busqueda is one coyote who smuggles people into the US; while he’s out crossing the border, his wife fends off the advances of the smarmy mayor, and his family flees town to hide in the desert. Unbeknownst to most, Diego’s daughter Flaca has been bit by one of the werewolves, and is turning into the long-sought mythical mother werewolf that Blackwell has been looking for…
Feeding Ground has a very subtle story, where if you blink you may miss some of the connections between Blackwell and the werewolf menace—but it’s pretty clear they have been breeding the things as some kind of super-weapon, with a tacit agreement in place with the Border Patrol. In fact, it’s implied that they not only caused the famine, but did so in order to drive migrants across the border to be turned into werewolf superweapons. Why they’re doing this, I haven’t a clue; not much is explained here, and it’d be nice to have an inkling of why the evil soulless corporation is doing evil and soulless things. The art is sharp—the covers in particular are fantastic, though the comic’s vivid color scheme reminds me of Dia de los Muertos—and the story isn’t bad.
This is a short volume collecting the full 6-issue run, and I think this brevity works against the story the writers were trying to tell. It’s not quite successful on its own, dragged down by a choppy and disjointed storyline which can be hard to follow—most of the details are here, but few are spelled out for the reader, and it ends leaving me with several unanswered questions. It’s a beautiful mess, as I love the surreal and psychedelic art style, but at the end of the day, that’s still a mess. Feeding Ground is worth flipping through, but it didn’t quite work for me.
Do I recommend this/will I continue reading it?: It’s not bad, but I’d recommend holding out for a sale or discount.
Recommended for fans of: Welcome to Hoxford, 30 Days of Night, Locke & Key, Harrow Country, werewolves. Also, readers who like being able to read en español (there’s a Spanish-language edition).
Not recommended for readers who: don’t like the gauzy art style and psychedelic colors; want a tight story that feels deep and complete.
Title: Feeding Ground
Author: Swifty Lang
Illustrator: Michael Lapinski
First Published: 2011
What I Read: Archaia Entertainment, 2011
Price I Paid: $0.99/issue (Kindle/Comixology sale)
MSRP: $24.99 tpb / $10.99 ebook
ISBN/ASIN: 1936393123 / B01E0HWFDI