Sweet Tooth, by Jeff Lemire (both art and story!), is an apocalyptic comic that benefits from being both familiar and unusual. The concepts, on the surface, allow for a easy suspension of disbelief while the details will keep readers enthralled.
Seven years ago a sickness struck the world down. If you weren’t sick, you would be eventually. The children would have been the hope of the future, since all the children are immune to the sickness. Unfortunately, every child born since the sickness was boron a human-animal hybrid.
Sweet Tooth stars Gus, a nine-year-old boy –with deer antlers growing out of his head–, who has been raised by his religious and paranoid father in a cabin in the woods ever since the whole world got sick and the only children born were part animal.
Early in the comic, Gus loses his father to either sickness or old age. Shortly after going out to burry the old man, Gus gets himself either rescued (or hoodwinked) by a badass loner named Jepperd. Jepperd promises to take Gus to “The Preserve,” where kids like Gus (human animal hybrids) are safe. Having only ever learned what his father taught him about people and the world, Gus is native but not stupid. He’s had almost no interaction with others but still manages to be kind without losing his instinct for self preservation.
Sweet Tooth manages to create a humor-violence-emotion hybrid. Each character is dimensional, reasonable, and interesting. Without saying too much, appearing too hokey, or over developed everyone is still fleshed out enough to be fresh and charming in their own, sometimes sadistic, ways.
I totally recommend this series. But, just in case my enthusiasm isn’t convincing enough, you can read this free preview of issue #1 (Volume 1 is a compilation of issue #1 through #5).
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