"Orchid #1" Comic Review
Written by James Ferguson
Published by Dark Horse Comics
Written by Tom Morello
Illustrated by Scott Hepburn
2011, 32 Pages, $1.00
Comic Book released on October 12th, 2011
Sooner or later, all the crap that we've done to this planet will catch up to us and nature will fight back. That's what seems to be the case with Tom Morello's Orchid, where the seas have risen and the gene pool has been polluted. As a result, there are some ugly new species out there. Meanwhile, society has been split up between an ultra-rich upper class and the bottom of the barrel "bridge people", used mostly as slaves.
All is not lost as there was a rebellion against the elite folks. Unfortunately that didn't work out quite well and the mask worn by the mysterious General China was captured by Dictator Tomo Wolfe. It has become a symbol of the rebellion and the new class decided to take it back. That didn't exactly go as planned, but one of them got away with the mask. He's figuring out what to do when he runs head first into Orchid, a 16-year-old street prostitute with an attitude.
This first issue of Orchid — priced at the ever-affordable amount of $1.00 — has all the makings of an origin story. It does it in a very short amount of time without feeling like there's too much or too little. You're given everything you need to know about the series to dive into issue two without a problem.
Scott Hepburn's art is downright gorgeous. The characters look great and everything is given more than enough detail. Hepburn gets to let loose with some of the creatures in this post-apocalyptic world. The book says that the genetic codes were smashed, so these new additions to the food chain are around causing havoc. There are only a handful of these new animals seen, but all of them are big and scary.
Although I didn't listen to it while reading it, this issue (and all future ones) has a soundtrack composed by Tom Morello. Certainly a nice bonus for fans.
This issue of Orchid sets the stage for the 12 part series very well. This is one of those "jumping-on" books you read about. Orchid is like Mad Max meets Che Guevara with a few mutant animals tossed in.