Devil’s Due/First Comics 2016
Created, Written & Layouts by Ash Maczko
Illustrated & Lettered by Ashley Witter
Crash and Zeezee stumble upon a ferocious new predator, Ghost continues to stalk the dark halls of the Tin Kin shelter, and Pepper and the Cikudah tribe join forces with the Tin Kin and prepare for the arrival of their enemy.
First and foremost I will say this while I was sad that Ashley lost the files on the computer it was damn well worth the wait for this! Right off the bat I was welcomed back into this world with open arms, as I was attacked by claws and teeth. I am thrilled to see Edgar again and to learn this time that he and his mother aren’t alone any more. It really does make things start off on the right path because haven’t seen Sarge and Lady haven’t begun talking yet. So the timeline of events for the ten year period are still undefined and explorable. Also that Edgar has himself a girlfriend so is the end of the human race really that far off?
I am beginning to see far beyond what Ash is doing here and as I have said before that’s the sign of a great writer. I mean I see how the Tin Tin Tribe is working together and I see how the influence of the way they lived before this. The characteristics of being a ground squirrel is they were already familiar with social living only now with the ability to speak and are wearing clothing, fashioning weapons and defending territory they’ve inadvertently become human like. Does the enhancement of the mind automatically mean human like behaviour? I don’t know but as humans we superimpose that when we bring it to life, look at Planet of the Apes for example, so maybe or maybe its survival of the fittest at its’ finest.
So far we really have been treated to the Tin Tin Tribe and their struggles so much so that they’ve become like family to the reader. We have our favourites and when things get tense or start to look troubles knocking at the door we begin to worry that they might not make it. This is a war they are fighting and there’s no guarantee who will live and who will die and while that’s natural in ever way possible. So that Ash has brought them to life in words, deeds and actions you have a problem not getting emotionally invested.
Speaking of emotionally invested miss Ashley and the work she does here I mean was there any chance whatsoever that we weren’t going to fall in love with these characters? The attention to detail in how the fur ruffles or the tails and whiskers or the fact that you can almost see a soul in the eyes just amazes me. Plus the utilisation of backgrounds here makes everything just that much better and it expands the story perfectly. Plus the way that the work on the page is shown so that the backgrounds are slightly out of focus or softer in appearance is how the eye works naturally and to have that kind of perspective is stunning to me.
Team Ash works in concert with one another like no other can and it’s extremely obvious to me that this is a passion project. The world they have created and how we see it through their eyes and our own not only make this one to watch but one that breaks all the rules we know about comics. Intense, violent and socially relevant this is what happens when animals stop playing nice and things get real. Next could a new ally be all that's needed to turn the tide?