R.E.M. released a song in 1987 that you may know and love, “”It’s the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine).” It is understandable if it may start playing in your mind as you read this new comic from Image Comics, a pre-apocalyptic tale, “Sheltered.” Like the wry humor you find in R.E.M. songs, this comic will intrigue you with its wit and keep you turning pages with its keen sense of suspense.
As the Prepnet Survivalcast Newsletter, reproduced at the end of this comic makes clear, a survivalist, or “prepper,” is not in it to be a hero. It’s all about survival–at any price. The prepper, ultimately, is in it for the prepper and not really anyone else, especially anyone that is going to impede progress. Be it an earthquake, tornado, or flood, you got to save yourself. And, maybe, it will be the worst disaster of them all, TEOTWAWKI, or, wait for it, “the end of the world as we know it.” This is the backdrop for this comic. With a little ironic wink and nod between the creators and readers, we quickly are immersed into the world of Safe Haven, a compound forever preparing for the end.
You can see right away that this bunker lifestyle has started to wear down even the most loyal of followers. Some are never satisfied with how the compound is developing. Some are more paranoid than others. The young are either afraid or mistrustful of the elders in charge. Given any cause for conflict, it would only take a matter of seconds for the whole group to turn on each other. What would happen if they ever had to react to any real crisis? That’s what we find out in this issue and that reveals everything.
Ed Brisson’s writing covers a lot of ground. It shakes things up pretty intensely with a determination that should carry over nicely throughout. Sometimes, it is best to bring forth a lot to the reader. You need to know, as a writer, when to speed things up with plot and when to slow the story down a bit. Sometimes plot prevails and you get hints of what your characters will be like. That said, we’re provided here with just the right mix and can already tell that we have interesting characters emerging. The artwork by Johnnie Christmas is a nice light and sharp line in keeping with the intensity of the plot. Colors by Shari Chankhama set just the right moody tone.
“Sheltered” is co-created by Ed Brisson and Johnnie Christmas, with colors by Shari Chankhama, and edited by Paul Allor. You can find past collaboration between Brisson and Christmas in “Murder Book,” which you can find here. Prepnet Survivalcast Newsletter was written by comics writer Ryan K. Lindsay.
“Sheltered #1″ is a July 10 release. #2 is out August 7. Visit our friends at Image Comics here.