After five issues, our hero Abel has gotten precious few answers, but Middlewest #5 finally gives him hope that they may be coming. But he may not like what he sees…
Skottie Young, Jorge Corona, Jean-Francois Beaulieu, and Nate Piekos start to wrap up the first arc of the series, and it seems like things aren’t going to go well…
Confronted by the carnies of Magdalena’s carnival, Abel begins to lose control and transform into someone not unlike the storm-monster his father became. Luckily, Magdalena herself- now an old woman named Maggie- calms him down and offers to help him find help. However, their time to do so may be limited.
Young continues to impress with how well he writes children. Abel and now Bobby are both emotionally wise, but they’re not written like tiny adults. They’re still kids, with believable fears, youthful enthusiasm, and genuine depth.
Meanwhile, this issue slows down, and gives us a lot of character work for those outside of Abel. Looking at solicits, we’re going to be following these characters for a while, so Young takes care with them. Fox is shown to care about more than himself, Maggie has lots of layers, and even the robot Wrench is full of depth. It’s skilled work from Young.
Corona and Beaulieu’s work is just fun in this issue. They depict a horrifying flashback at the opening of the issue, and the sequence of Abel losing control is heartbreaking. However, after this, they’re still able to capture the joy of the carnival setting, the enthusiasm of the characters within it, and the emotional depth that Young’s script asks for. This art team shows the beginnings of greatness that I can’t wait to see more of.
Nearing the end of the first arc, I’m finding that I’m still loving the series as much as I did with the first issue.
Middlewest #5 is available now from Image Comics.