Thursday, March 28, 2013

[BOOK REVIEW] Chew: Flambe Volume 4 by John Layman

Title:  Chew: Flambe Volume 4

Author: John Layman

Artist: Rob Guillory

Genre: Crime / Humor

Year Published: 2011

Year Read: 2013

Series: Chew #4

Publisher: Image Comics

Source:  Library

Content Rating:  Ages 16+ (Gory Violence and Strong Language)


Seriously, will I ever put this series down?  Every time I pick up a volume from John Layman’s Eisner Award and Harvey Award winning series “Chew,” things just keeps getting crazier and more interesting than ever before!  In this volume, “Chew: Flambé,” things get even more crazy for Tony Chu and John Colby as there is a panic going on in the United States when strange alien letterings suddenly show up in the sky!

What is this story about?

In this volume, after a mysterious alien language suddenly pops up in the sky, everyone starts panicking and believes that an alien invasion is about to come to Earth!  So, it is up to the FDA agents Tony Chu and John Colby to find out about this supposed alien conspiracy and what will it mean for Earth?

What I loved about this story:

John Layman’s writing: For the past three volumes, I have always said that John Layman’s writing on the “Chew” series has been nothing but fantastic!  Well, in this volume, John Layman really brought out true surreal humor as Tony Chu and John Colby get into even more crazy adventures than usual!  I loved the way that John Layman made things even more interesting with the mystery surrounding the strange alien language suddenly appearing in the sky and it was great seeing the build up towards solving the mystery of the alien language and what it would mean for Earth.  John Layman’s humorous writing is just as top notch in this volume as it was in the previous three volumes and I really love the moments shared between Tony and his twin sister Antonelle “Toni” Chu as Toni is like the annoying younger sibling towards Tony and I love how she truly cares about him despite annoying him at every chance.  I also love the character “Poyo,” the rooster who for some strange reason is able to do some kung-fu fighting (do not worry; you will see its moves in this volume)! It was also interesting seeing Tony’s daughter (yes, Tony actually has a daughter) Olive Chu as she seems to have resentment towards Tony and it would be interesting to see in future volumes whether or not her relationship with Tony will improve or not.

Rob Guillory’s artwork:  Rob Guillory’s artwork is as usual, extremely hilarious and detailed at the same time as it brought in so much humor and tension to the story.  I loved the way that the characters look bizarre as their bodies are done in exaggerated proportions, making the artwork truly creative to look at.  I also loved the way that Rob Guillory drew the gory scenes during the crime scenes, even though the blood splattering scenes might be a bit too exaggerated, but it just made those situations more humorous to look at than making you cringe in disgust (which I never thought would be possible)!

What made me feel uncomfortable about this story:

For anyone who does not like gory scenes and strong language, this volume definitely has plenty of strong violence and language.  There are many instances where the characters drop the “s” and “f” bombs throughout the stories and that might offend anyone who does not like reading such strong language in a graphic novel.  Also, there are many violent scenes of characters getting shot and cut up and blood splattering everywhere and that might make anyone uncomfortable if they are not used to gory scenes.

Final Thoughts:

Overall, “Chew: Flambe” is really setting things up and I definitely cannot wait to see what this mysterious alien language in the sky is going to do to the characters in the future.  I would definitely recommend this volume to any fan of John Layman’s “Chew” series and also check out the other volumes that came before this one:

Chew: Taster’s Choice
Chew: International Flavors
Chew: Just Desserts

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