It’s difficult to describe Decorum #1. It’s a world-building debut that shows the evolution of writer Jonathan Hickman. Hickman is known for his deeply thought-out worlds. But, over recent years he’s shifted to something so much more.
Hickman’s shift was most recently present in his relaunch of Marvel’s X-Men line of comics. There we got an entire new language and pages devoted to additional material to explain things. This wasn’t filler material where the reader is expected to look for hints and clues or throwaway material. Instead, readers have been treated to in-depth articles describing socio-political situations or deep dives into a particular aspect. Hickman continues that in Decorum #1.
The comic has an almost roleplaying game sourcebook quality about it. It definitely pays homage to the old-school comic sourcebooks which are rarer to come by nowadays. In between chapters the creative team dives into specific aspects of the world Hickman is building. Planets are discussed or some of the history presented. It creates a richer experience that takes this debut beyond the typical comic experience.
That’s helped by Mike Huddleston‘s art. It’s unlike anything I’ve seen with a style that’s so fresh and engaging it’s almost distracting. It helps build upon the alien nature of it all while at the same time delivering familiarity. Beautiful is an understatement from the work which is enhanced by Rus Wooton‘s lettering. The art alone is a reason to purchase this comic. It’s difficult to describe but will keep you lingering on every page.
Decorum #1 is a jaw-dropping debut. It’s a must get for all comic fans as it challenges everything about comics from the narrative to the art, and Sasha E. Head‘s fantastic design work. Part story, part worldbuilding, Decorum #1 is a unique experience. It’s also a near-perfect debut.
Story: Jonathan Hickman Art: Mike Huddleston
Letterer: Rus Wooton Design: Sasha E. Head
Story: 9.5 Art: 10 Overall: 9.75 Recommendation: Buy
Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review