Dandy Don the Valiant Review: FAMILY TREE Volume 1: THE SAPLING- It Grows on You!
FAMILY TREE Volume 1
Writer: Jeff Lemire
Artist: Phil Hester
Cover Artist: Phil Hester
Publisher: Image Comics
Oh, hey, Mom. I’m in the middle of writing a trade paperback review for Family Tree. Now, why would I have to go to England to write about this efficiently? No, Mom, this isn’t about OUR family tree. This review is about the first four issues of the series by Jeff Lemire. No, I don’t know him personally. I’m not writing his family tree, Mom, I’m reading and reviewing his Family Tree. I agree that reading someone’s genealogy could be boring, but this isn’t about his personal family tree, it’s about his series Family Tree. No, I’m not repeating myself. No, I haven’t been drinking! Geesh. Sorry about that, OG peeps. Now, let’s get to this week’s Dandy Don the Valiant’s weekly review.
Jeff Lemire can take an idea that seems absolutely ludicrous, like people turning into trees, and create a world that is absolutely amazing. That idea blossomed into a series titled, Family Tree. If you missed it when it first came out last year, you can now read the first four issues in the Family Tree trade paperback titled, Volume 1: The Sapling. Lemire has planted a seed that is steadily growing into a possible Eisner Award winning story.
The story begins by mentioning how the world started to end on March 14, 1997 and it only gets more intriguing with every turn of the page. Loretta Hays is a single mom trying to raise her teenage son and eight-year-old daughter the best she can in Lowell, Maine. It’s not long before we see her daughter slowly sprouting twigs and leaves from her body. The family is traveling in their car when another vehicle slams into them on purpose and tries to kill them because they somehow know about the eight-year-old girl’s tree transformation. When all hope seems lost, Loretta’s long lost father-in-law comes to the rescue. Even though they are rescued, Loretta is not happy to see him (and you’ll have to read this volume to find out why). After he explains that he might know what’s going on, Loretta and her kids reluctantly go with him to try and find a cure for her daughter before it’s too late. It only gets more mysterious from there. This amazing story has grown roots and has branched out to possibly be one of the most fascinating tales ever told.
Jeff Lemire has an imagination that is second to none. His fresh and original idea will touch the hearts and minds of the readers, while taking them to places that will not only be remembered throughout the history of comic book lore, but fantasy storytelling period. Add the wonderful interior and cover art by Ryan Cody and Eric Gapstur, along with the pencils and cover art of Phil Hester, and you have a pedigree that will stand the test of time.
Well, yeah, Mom, I guess our family tree could be turned into a comic book. Yes, we would still have to use pencils and ink. No, Mom, sap won’t work! Oh, boy.