Graphic Novel Review: Chew Vol. 1 by John Layman

Title: Chew Vol. 1
Author: John Layman
Artist:Rob Guillory
Published: 2009
Genre: Adult Graphic Novel – Fantasy

Synopsis: Tony Chu is a detective with a secret. A weird secret. Tony Chu is Cibopathic, which means he gets psychic impressions from whatever he eats. It also means he’s a hell of a detective, as long as he doesn’t mind nibbling on the corpse of a murder victim to figure out whodunit, and why. He’s been brought on by the Special Crimes Division of the FDA, the most powerful law enforcement agency on the planet, to investigate their strangest, sickest, and most bizarre cases.

My Rating: red-starred-starred-starred-star

I picked up this graphic novel on a whim because I was taking so long reading my larger books and I just wanted to complete something. I enjoyed this despite it being gross and a bit over the top at times. Our titular character is Tony Chu and he lives in a world still reeling from a horrible bird-flu which killed millions of people and caused the government to ban chicken as a food. Tony tracks down rings of chicken much in a social critique of the drug wars. I thought that the plot was solid, the art was well done if not disgusting but it was well crafted. Tony has an ability to taste anything and know where it came from or its past which is very useful to him as a detective. His cannibalism abilities land him with a job in the FDA who is the FBI of this world, a very powerful agency with a lot of secrets.

I really enjoyed the side characters and the mystery. This is a brutally gruesome graphic series, you need to be OK with people eating domestic animals (pets) and a lot of bloody nasty wounds. I definitely think I will continue this long series, hopefully the plot keeps me interested 🙂



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