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Hybrid Bastards! Comic Review - -

Story 8.5
Art 7.0
Value 9.0
Total 8.5
Publisher: Archaia Comics
Release Date: 13/07/2010
Reviewer: Troy Mayes


Hybrid Bastards!

Archaia Comics Hybrid Bastards! is probably one of the weirdest and most twisted comics Iíve ever read. Writer Tom Pinchuk takes something most people are familiar with, Zeus and the Greek Gods, and turns it completely on its head. Most people know that, in the legendary tales, Zeus got around. Hell we saw that in Clash of the Titans yet did any of us ever consider how that would make Zeusís wife Hera feel? Well thatís what Pinchuk has done with Hybrid Bastards! and thatís what makes it so twisted. 

Hera is sick of Zeusís illicit affairs so one night, 18 years ago, she tricks him into getting busy with any inanimate object he sees. Being King of the Gods Zeusís seed is a little bit magical and those inanimate objects have now come to life as Hybrid Bastards. See I told you its some pretty bizarre stuff.   

Hera decides to inform Zeus of her trick and Zeus is now hell-bent on riding the world of his Hybrid Bastard sons. The sons in particular are Corey (an apple), Walter (a wall), Cotton (a collection of clothes), Carmine (a car) and Panos, whose twisted birth isnít as obvious as the others.  Panos decides that working together is the groupís best chance for seeking revenge on Zeus and for staying out of the clutches of his goons. You see in Pinchukís world Zeus has fallen from his lofty position as King of the Gods and now he occupies the position of crime lord. The brothers embark on a revenge plan against Zeus thatís rather hilarious and involves breaking stuff. 

Pinchuk has really gone all out to create a truly wicked and outrageous story and the result is an entertaining read. The dialogue is very cartoony, like the couple at the beginning that is its not overly serious fare but very entertaining. Pinchuk lets the story run on for just the right amount of time avoiding the temptation to drag it out longer than it should be and throughout you are left wondering what crazy thing Pinchuk will think of next right until the unexpected ending. Itís like he implants this weird sense of curiosity in you that demands you read through it as quickly as you can so you can find out what heís going to throw at you next.   

The brothers are the standout characters in the book as they are the most prominent and fully developed. Each of them has a unique personality making them standout from the rest. Panos is the leader of the group and somewhat stuck in the past; Cotton is the brains of the group who is studying to be a lawyer (seriously!), Carmine is a reluctant participant who just wants to be part of a family, Walter is loud, destructive and inconsiderate, like a teenager can be, and Corey is the forgotten one of the group who is somewhat useless and self depreciating. They interact well and you do get that sense that they are actually brothers, just somewhat different from normal.   

The art, from Kate Glasheen, is just as crazy as the story. It has a real cartoony, chaotic look with no real sense of realism in the way characters are drawn or the page pieced together and this really compliments the rather silly premise of the story. It would be weird to see very realistic, dark images accompanying such an absurd story. The one difficulty in the style is the absence of your traditional page layouts with easy to follow panels and thereís a lot happening on each page all over the page. At times it was difficult to follow the flow from one part to the next due to the page layout.  

Hera is brilliantly designed, looking very reminiscent of Cruella de Vil, a look that suits her scheming character very well. Meanwhile the brothers are also well designed and, apart from Panos, easy to identify (in terms of what they actually are). There was also something about their designs which reflected their personalities. Panos was muscled and a bit of a poser reflecting his strong will and traditional outlook. Corey was round with small arms and legs making him incapable of doing much, reflecting his relative impotence on the team while Walter was big and strong, reflecting his youthful, act first attitude and Cotton somehow reminded you of a snobby English gentleman, reflecting his intellect and sense of almost being above the groupís revenge plan. Finally, Carmine through his big eyes and what you would call ears has a look of innocence to him.  It was great the way Glasheen managed to capture these aspects in their respective designs.  

Hybrid Bastards! is a ridiculously enjoyable read. Itís something new and different and itís really aided by not taking itself too seriously. Even though the brothers want revenge itís something more in line with their personality and not some epic, clichťd revenge plan.  Glasheen produces some good art that may not be everyoneís cup of tea but it serves the comic well. Finally, it comes bundled with a ton of extras including two bonus stories and extra artwork. If you like your stories twisted and fun then Hybrid Bastards! is for you.  


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