Writer: Mark Russell
Artist: Dominike Stanton
Inkers: Mark Morales & Sean Parsons
Colorist: Jeremy Lawson
If you were to go into a comic shop and pick up a comic with the cover ripped off (and let’s just assume ads and random back matter are missing, just to play along) you could probably still be able to tell a DC book from others. The world is universal in feel, even without an iconic character like Superman or Batman. When you pick up an issue of Prez, however, you’d be hard pressed to recognize it’s publisher, that being DC. After checking it out for the first time today, I can see why it’s getting the praise it does. Unique is an understatement with this one.
The idea of this book is simple: in a future America where Tech and big corporations have basically taken over, a 19 year old who became a viral sensation becomes president and, hilarity ensues. That summation doesn’t do this story justice, but to keep from rambling, I’ll leave it there. Beth, the 19 year old president, is getting acclimated to her role in this issue, as the plot more or less goes into how the extremes of the political spectrum (in this case the right side) will become an issue of Beth. Most of the issue, however, is more or less tidbits of the future, outlandish society. For example, a man named Fred Wayne created an algorithm to make the perfect screenplays and books, and we see him at the Oscars basically take a sweep, as he looks on indifferently. This book is clearly attempting to show how society could lead to a ridiculous future like this, or just how the society IN THE BOOK responded to what’s happening right now in the real world, and took late teens early 20 year olds and gave them power, letting them run wild. The more I try to explain this, the more convoluted it seems, but it’s really not. I would definitely recommend checking out this story because it’s just so crazy and out there. That being said, I love the fact that DC is publishing this book. While it’s clearly a risk, it’s so different that it’s one of a kind on the stands, and for the comedy alone it’s worth a look. The story (and art, which I will explain later), reminded me heavily of Chew.
For the first 3 issues, the artwork on this book was handled by Ben Caldwell, who was knocking it out of the park with the off the wall cartooning and facial work, having a really strong Rob Guilleroy Chew feel. This issue saw a different artist, Dominike Stanton, take a crack at the book, and while very different, I thought it fit very well with the book. In many places I got the same whacky feel, and the panel to panel work was incredibly expressive and clear. When the comedy get racked up in the script, I did find myself missing Caldwell, but from a rendering standpoint, I thought Stanton was very solid. The style is unique, to a point where I find it hard to name an analogue, but I can definitely see the Manga influence in the faces of these characters.
All in all, while I found myself wanting some more in terms of long term plot, I also really enjoyed the one of a kind feel this book has. I think if people are missing Chew (since that schedule is weird) or just want a refreshing book, this is one to check out. I like to see DC expanding the tone of their line; to me, this is a win for them
4 Corndogs out of 5