Early Book Review: Orchid Volume 1 by Tom Morello, Dan Jackson, Scott Hepburn

Orchid Volume 1 by Tom Morello, Dan Jackson, and Scott Hepburn is an adult graphic novel scheduled for release on July 12 2012. In this story the world is drastically changed, but in ways that are not out of the realm of possibility as far as I am concerned. Greed; battles over resources and power, and the resulting environmental changes have led to the waters rising and covering the world. When the waters recede the world is in a shambles and the genetics of the animals that have survived are vastly different than anything we might know today. The safe ground, the high ground, lies in the hands of the rich. Everyone else is fighting for survival against the new ferocious wildlife and the powerful that want to use them as slave labor or worse. A few stand up to the powerful, out of conviction or necessity. One of these few is Orchid, a survivor who leads us on a journey which outlines the dividing lines of society, how far some will go for ultimate power, and how hard others have to fight for survival.

Orchid starts off with a band of freedom fighters liberating a sacred mask from a powerful leader, who is ruthless. The mask was once worn by a great rebel leader, and is rumored to kill anyone that puts it on but is not a 'saint'. I really thought that the mask would play a greater role in the graphic novel, while it was important to the plot line it was not the vital force that I thought it would be. The story itself was solid, and offered a very clear stance on greed, freedom, oppression, and other expected themes. The images were vivid and hold more interest to me than the story itself, and the words.

Orchid is an interesting graphic novel, but was not something which I would label as a must read. Readers that enjoy stories about the rich oppressing the poor, violent rebellion, and how corporate greed can adversely effect everything will have interest in the story. Graphic novel fans that enjoy the artwork of the members of the team who worked on this will also enjoy flipping through the pages to admire the work that went into Orchid. However, I think most people will not be missing out if they skip this one.
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