Vol 1, The Apocalypse Suite: illustrated by Gabriel Bá
For reasons unknown, one one day, 47 women around the world gave birth, even though they weren't pregnant at the beginning of the day. An eccentric millionaire, knowing these children were something special, tried to adopt as many as he could, and got to seven of them. Flash forward to when the kids are 10, and six of the seven defend the Eiffel tower from a robot named Gustav Eiffel. Another big time jump, and the kids are now all adults. The team has disbanded and scattered to the corners of the Earth and beyond. The death of their father brings six of the seven kids together again. Number Five is still missing. Number Seven, Vanya, doesn't have any perceived powers other than playing the violin, and she's shunned by her super-powered siblings for a tragedy that happened years ago. Vanya's ostracization causes her to make some really terrible choices that affect her family.
For this being only 180 pages, there is a lot packed into this story. You have each of the seven children/adults to unpack, and the storm Vanya unleashes, as well as what's happened with father Hargreeves, and his wife, Mom. Then, there's an assistant who's a chimp, and a few more things for good measure. This story could have easily been over 250 pages and still had room to explore everything. Although everything was very fast, the story was enjoyable and extremely quirky. None of the superheroes are typical super heroes; instead, they are complicated adults with complicated lives, and I would have very much liked to have seen some of their adventures between the Eiffel Tower and Hargreeves' death.
Gabriel Bá's illustrations are beautiful and complement the ludicrous and enjoyable storyline. The most expressive parts of the bodies he draw are the eyes, especially when the heroes wear their eye masks. As with other of Bá's work, faces and facial expressions tend to be a strong point.
Dark Horse rates this for audiences 14 and older. Teens are definitely going to be interested in this story because it was written by Gerard Way, the lead singer of My Chemical Romance, who announced before COVID-19 shut everything down that they would be touring again. They might also be interested in this book because of the popular Netflix series. There is some fantasy violence, and depiction of childbirth (without details) at the beginning, and some cussing, that makes this for teens and not for younger audiences.
Sara's rating: 8/10
Suitability Level: Grades 9-12
Tags: Rating: 8/10, Suitability: High School, Comicbooks, Superheroes, Science Fiction
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