Comic Review: Revival Volume 4

The Image Comics series Revival describes itself as a “rural noir”.  That seems even more appropriate as the series continues and even a mystery or two that seemed either solved or cut-and-dried are, well, decidedly not so.

The fourth volume, subtitled Escape to Wisconsin, expands the setting quite literally and has one half of the strangest possible crossovers with another Image series possible.

Much of this fourth volume deals with Dana Cypress heading to New York City, the first resident allowed to leave from the small Wisconsin town where, for some unknown reason, a group of the recently deceased got up and started walking around again.  Dana’s kid sister Em is one of them, unbeknownst to most of the town.  Em was murdered and one of the things this volume hints at is that Em’s killer may not be whom the reader (and Dana and Em) had been led to believe it was.  Dana is actually following up on a previous volume’s case where some redneck brothers appeared to be harvesting a revived man’s organs and smuggling them to the outside world.  Since the revived simply grow new organs in seeming seconds, the suggestion might have been black market organ sales for donors.

As it turned out, there was something far more sinister going on, and it ties back to an elderly revived man who managed to get out of the quarantine on his own after murdering some members of his own family.

Back In Wisconsin, the Cypress sisters’ father, the local sheriff, is dealing with an anti-government extremist with the most interesting car, and the local older health nut looks for revenge after the death of a loved one of his own.  Writer Tim Seeley and artist Mike Norton don’t really come any closer to explaining why these particular dead people won’t stay dead, but there’s a lot more to see about what effect people who can’t or won’t stay dead suddenly have on the rest of the world.

Oh, and as for the crossover, it’s with a series that in terms of tone and style could not be more different than Revival, namely Chew.  It’s a single issue, and while it isn’t a bad story, it also doesn’t seem to quite fit in with Revival‘s overall aesthetic.  The end result somewhat drags down the rest of the book.  8 out of 10 meta commentaries on odd crossovers.

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