Image Comics 2020
Created, Written & Lettered by John Layman
Illustrated by Dan Boultwood
“THE FIRST COURSE,” Part One
TONY CHU is a cibopath, able to get psychic impressions from what he eats. SAFFRON CHU is a cibopars, able to learn secrets from who she eats with. Tony is a cop. Saffron is a criminal. They are brother and sister, and they are on a collision course. Spinning out of the multiple Eisner Award-winning and New York Times bestselling series CHEW comes CHU, a felonious new food noir about cops, crooks, cooks, and clairvoyants.
I know that this is already going into a second printing and here I am late to the party. That’s okay really because if you are like me you can still pick this u and understand everything that is going on. This is new reader friendly and it really is a great introductory issue to a new series. I found this fun, entertaining and full of the kind of humour that I do rather enjoy seeing. I am left feeling intrigued by what is going to come next, I am overjoyed by the wide array of characters that we’ve met thus far and I am certainly interested in seeing how some of these situations are going to play out.
The way that this is being told is fantastic. This being my introduction and that we open up with Mr. Boss I found myself drawn in rather quickly. Also the code name thing reminds me of Dick Tracy a bit and I have to say I found myself digging that. The story & plot development that we see through how the sequence of events unfold as well as how the reader learns information is presented beautifully. The character development is sensational and I really am enjoying how we see the personalities emerge. Saffron is a great little character and there are so many moments we see her and think something is up but can’t quite put your finger on it but it adds this air of mystery about her that is fascinating. The pacing is superb and as it takes us through the pages revealing the twists & turns along the way we see how everything works together to create the books ebb & flow.
The overall aesthetic of the book is sensational; it has all the right notes arranged to create a beautiful symphony. It is just the right blend of silly and serious that makes you sit up and take notice and that’s precisely what a good book should do. It also holds the distinction that every single time you read it, and you will re-read this quite a bit, it still has the same effect on the reader.
The interiors here are well rendered. The linework is great and we see varying weights being utilised to bring about the detail work we see. Granted I would like to see more but hey this style isn’t always suited for that and I have to remember to love it for what it is. The faces and facial expressions are fantastic and do wonders in furthering the characterisation. The backgrounds are extremely well utilised, inserting that kitty was genius, and they do bring us this nice depth perception, sense of scale and the overall sense of size and scope for the book. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels show a good, strong eye for storytelling. The colour work is great and there is this really nice mix of techniques and applications.
This is a great book and it’s one of the reasons why there is so much diversity on the stands. A little bit of everything for any and every mood you are in. With some stellar writing, great layers being entwined throughout and some absolutely delightful interiors this is the hit of the summer.