Title: Middlewest #4
Words: Skottie Young
Art: Jorge Corona
Colors: Jean-Francois Beaulieu
Published: February 20, 2019
Publisher’s Summary: Abel and the fox have wandered into a small-town carnival where they should be able to find the healer they seek. While they search, Fox teaches Abel that survival sometimes means bending the rules a bit.
“Most fun place in Middlewest…the Earth…the Galaxy!”
The carnival’s in town, and with it the possibility of answers. If only life were really that simple. How will Abel get himself out of his latest mess? Middlewest #4 brings the carnival to life in full color with extraordinary detail.
Skottie Young weaves elements of the carnival into the story, connecting Abel’s struggles to carnival taboos. Young also uses this setting to lighten the mood of the series, even if it’s for just the briefest moment. As the carnival’s energy sweeps through the panels, readers will feel the familiar pull of carnival games. In this way, Young submerges his readers in Middlewest’s setting. The vastness of Middlewest breaks for just a moment at the carnival, a universal setting and a place where readers can collect their bearings. And just when stability sets in, Young yanks the rug out, sending Abel into a whirlwind of emotions and uncertainty.
Middlewest #4 progresses Abel and Fox’s story forward while simultaneously giving the characters a moments reprieve from their travels. This constant speeding up and slowing down of action keeps the plot interesting. Young’s ability to tap into the emotional aspects of the story really shine this issue. The carnival represents an interesting balance between nostalgia and horror, as readers apprehensively approach the Hurst Family Amazing Amusements. The tension between the two emotions is quite brilliant.
And what carnival would be complete without games, rides, and food? Jorge Corona and Jean-Francois Beaulieu create a vivid setting in the Hurst Family Amazing Amusements. There’s sensory overload in the opening panels which exclusively show closeups of carnival games. It’s load and bright and a little over-the-top, a replica of any carnival you’ll remember. Young’s words are perfectly realized in the artwork.
The Bottom Line
Step right up! Middlewest #4 is a whimsical, nostalgic experience not to be missed. Skottie Young and Jorge Corona bring the Hurst Family Amazing Amusements to life, with panels of detailed images.