General DC

Review: We Can Never Go Home Issues 1-3

we can never go homeIf you want to see how great comics book writers and artists emerge, read this series. There are some choppy parts, but there is also some solid writing, life-like illustration, and the coloring really brings it together. The choppiness is all part of the appeal of this series.

We Can Never Go Home was created by talented artists who, for the most part, have only a couple published works under their belt. Readers have the chance to really see creators experiment.

The series follows two teenagers on the run after a couple grisly encounters with an ex-beau, an abusive father, and eventually, the police. Oh, and there are some super powers involved.

Popular and pretty girl, Madison, an Asian-American girl adopted by a white family and plopped in the middle of an all white town. Let the alienation begin. However,  it seems that she has so far managed to fit in, dating the football star and working to get a full scholarship, all the while managing to hide her powers.

Then she meet Duncan– the schools weird kid–caught peeking at her and the football star making out in the car. It all spirals down from there. Fast forward through some realistic angst at school the following day, some gritty scenes, and the two find themselves on the run.

What I like about this series is they don’t hide from their characters. Writers Matthew Rosenberg and Patrick Kindlon do an excellent job of keeping Duncan, the weird kid, weird. They don’t fall into making him the likable, charming weird kid that for reasons unknown never makes it to popularity because, dang, he really is nice! Duncan is awkward, he is kind of arrogant, and he is frankly, a little creepy toward Madison. The reader can tell he wants her. Like any teenage boy would. A weird kid suddenly finds himself alone with the prettiest girl at school. The writers do not attempt to turn it into a happy ending text-book romance, at least not right away.

Then, the writers come through again when they portray Madison as harboring some real anger towards the kids at school and the town she has so easily won over. All the while being sort of detached and disgusted.

The story is a bit rushed, and it took me two reads to really understand what was happening. That, however, is another thing I like. We are watching writers grow. A very rare and special thing to see. I say grow because there is a lot of talent in this story.

Illustrator Josh Hood does a great job, the angles are fresh, and the scenes come straight off the page. Like the others, Josh Hood can be considered fairly new so readers have chance to watch an illustrator grow. There are some choppy pieces, but overall Josh does an excellent job of portraying a certain grit.

Colorist Amanda Scurti does an excellent job of making the atmosphere in this story, it wouldn’t be the same comic without her.

One more cool thing about this series: it comes with a Spotify mixtape–err, playlist! Tracks by the Buzzcocks, Adam and The Ants, The Specials, among others really sets a good tone, and speaks to the whole creative team’s punk/alt past.

With comics that come with a Spotify playlist,  or authors that have worked with rappers like Ghost Faced-Killah, and colorists that have worked on Alt-comics like Tank Girl, readers are  beginning to see creators bring their interests, outside of comics, into their work. I like it.

We are witnessing a new generation of comic creators, so buckle up.

Story: Matthew Rosenberg & Patrick Kindlon Art: Josh Hood Coloring: Amanda Scurti
Story: 8.0 Art: 7.5 Overall 8.0 Recommended Buy

Black Mask Studios provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

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