Bug!: The Adventurers of Forager #1
By Lee Allred, Michael Allred, and Laure Allred
Are you looking for a new title to obsess over or maybe you’re looking for a trip down memory lane this week. Well, either way, Bug!:The Adventures of Forager from DC’s Young Animals has you covered. This book follows Bug on an adventure through the dreamscape with none other than silver age Sandman. The last time we saw Bug was in Cosmic Odyssey in 1989 when he seemingly sacrificed his life to save the galaxy. This first issue in the new mini-series picks up right after those events as Bug wakes up inside a man-made cocoon he has made. He is trying to find out what happened to him after he died, while also trying to figure out where he is. The book moves at lightening quick speed as Bug interacts with a talking teddy bear, the aforementioned silver age Sandman, and a bad guy throwback. This book has a really fun quality that pays homage to Bug creator Jack Kirby that will feel refreshing for some, but maybe boring for others.
This book is a throwback to silver age comics not just terms of pacing and character choice, the entire creative team was completely aligned in delivering a book that fully embraces the Silver Age aesthetic. It should come as no surprise that the Eisner family was the mastermind behind Bug!:The Adventures of Forager #1. Lee Allred wrote the script, Michael Allred was on art, with colors from Laura Allred. The book has the feel of a vintage comic that has some modern elements mixed into the look, like clever panel layouts. The color choices and characters at first glance make you take a look at how old the book is, but one thing is certain, this book really will stand out on a comic shelf.
Writer Allred really took some risks in this issue with the story, especially the pacing The book starts running the second you pick it up and it literally does not stop until the last page. The creators do a great job to set up the future of this mini-series with a quasi-preview of what is to come for young, brave Bug. The art does really look good as it keeps and sets the pace of this breakneck speed story. There are a lot of great panels laid out for us with Bug almost dancing while battling bad guys. However, the downside is so much information gets thrown at the reader, that it becomes hard to follow what is going on. It may be easier for hardcore comic lovers, or die-hard Kirby creature lovers, who know Bug and his backstory really well. As for everyone else, it may become challenging to keep up with the story as it unfolds, and from the looks of the upcoming issues, it is only going to increase in speed.
The creative team really did assemble a beautiful book that would make Jack Kirby proud with the bright primary colors and use of deformed monsters all over the pages. The book is light and fun, even when the material being covered in the pages may not be. There is no hardness in hero nor enemy character design, and all the fighting that takes place appears more choreographed, so the fights look more like a dance than a fight. All these qualities play into Bug quite nicely; he is not your typical comic leading man and this not your typical comic creative team suit him just fine.
DC’s Young Animals is launching this brand new mini-series with Bug!: Adventures of Forager #1 and it really started on a high note. This book perfectly set up a future mini-series that will take a nice walk memory lane, to a time when comics where simpler. This book is certainly a breath of fresh air amongst the other titles on the market. It will attract audiences with its nostalgia aspect, but the story and characters are just the right amount of weird that’s effective enough to entice audiences into their world and, hopefully, build a brand new base of fans for Bug.