Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Review: WAYWARD #5

IMAGE COMICS – @ImageComics

STORY: Jim Zub – @jimzub
ART: Steve Cummings – @stekichikun
COLORS: Tamra Bonvillain – @TBonvillain
LETTERS: Marshall Dillon – @MarshallDillon
COVER: Steve Cummings with Tamra Bonvillain
VARIANT COVER: Marguerite Sauvage
28pp, Color, $3.50 U.S.

Wayward #5 arrives in comic book shops today (Wednesday, December 17, 2017).  It is the conclusion of the series' first story arc (“String Theory”).  Wayward is the creation of writer Jim Zub and penciller Steve Cummings.  Published by Image Comics, Wayward focuses on Rori Lane, a half-Irish/half-Japanese teen girl.  Rori is trying to start a new life in Japan with her mother, Sanae, only to find herself connected to the magic and ancient creatures that lurk in the shadows of Tokyo.

Wayward #5 (“Chapter Five”) opens after the battle in the decommissioned subway tunnels beneath Ueno Park.  Rori and her “gang” of fellow supernatural types, Ayane, Shirai, and Nikaido narrowly defeated a band of monsters.  Rori discovered, however, from the leader of their attackers, that all was not what it seemed.  Now, Rori races home, sensing that her mother, Sanae, is in danger.  It is actually worse and more complicated that she imagines.

As with previous issues, the ComicBookBin received an advanced review PDF copy of Wayward #5 that writer Jim Zub sent to reviewers.  This fifth issue is also the close of the series' first story arc.  Wayward is going on a two-month hiatus and will return in March 2015.

Zub and Cummings leave us with a beautifully drawn and exceptionally told series, and while they leave us with many questions, they also leave us caught in the weave.  We want to be Wayward.  With each new issue, Wayward expands its scope without losing its great sense of mystery.  With similarities to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, yokai manga, and Harry Potter, Wayward is that amazing new fantasy series we've been waiting for DC Comics' Vertigo imprint to give us.  Instead, Jim Zub, Steve Cummings, and Image Comics have given it to us.  Gimme more.


[Wayward #5 contains another engrossing essay, “Hyakki Yagyo and the Yokai Invasion,” by Zack Davisson (@ZackDavisson), with art by Steve Cummings.]

Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux

The text is copyright © 2014 Leroy Douresseaux. All Rights Reserved. Contact this blog for syndication rights and fees.

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