Publisher: Image Comics
Writer: Sean Lewis
Artist: Hayden Sherman
Release Date: 18th January 2017
The Few is a story of two brothers – soldiers, actually – in a survivalist future who one day discover a woman in the woods. The woman, unconscious, is holding a gun and a baby in a gas mask. Bemused, they rescue her, not really knowing who she is or where she comes from. It’s a decision that sets them on a path together to get to The Remainder States, a journey to what is left of America.
Now, you may be thinking ‘not another Mad Max clone,’ and that’s an understandable leap to make. Yes, perhaps there are some things that could be perceived as complementary elements. In this world, the antagonist Herrod could be likened to Immortan Joe, whose followers must swear allegiance to him. Hale (the unconscious woman) rescuing the baby could be equated to Imperator Furiosa liberating Joe’s wives. Yet, by the end of the issue you’ll realise that this comparison is about as wrong as it gets, so don’t make the mistake of having it in the first place.
Issue one of The Few hints at so much more. In fact, such is the skilled delivery of the narrative that this world Sean Lewis has created feels fully developed already. There is a sleekness to the diction of the story as we first encounter this world through the circumstances of Hale, and it sets up the foundations of the story well. The baby in the gas mask may well be a McGuffin, and I find part of me hoping that it is, but it serves to drive the encounter between Hale and the brothers (Peter and Davey). The baby acts as a catalyst for Peter and Davey to accept Hale as they proceed to try to escape Herrod’s men and head into The Remainder States.
What Hayden Sherman brings to The Few is some truly stunning artwork. The intricacy of the linework is a real eye opener, as is it’s organic nature. There is a real juxtaposition to the art, the freehand lines are scratch-like in mood, and yet the overall effect is so precise and controlled. It’s a very original style of drawing and immediately grabbed and held my attention. The effect is augmented by some rather interesting vectored shading, a greyscale incorporating some light pastel blues and greens on cream pages. It adds to the overall feel of the environ, a snow covered Montana, but it also serves to give the bloody scene – where the addition of block red is used – a lot more punch. It’s a time-served and successful trick seen in black and white graphic novels that really works in Sherman’s panels, mixed within the greyed and faded color palette.
Overall, I think the first episode of The Few is a solid introduction. Sean Lewis is clearly skilled in his writing, and has developed his characters well during this introduction, giving a sense of fullness to the story. It’s also incredibly easy to read and follow, something which, coupled with a truly unique artist in Hayden Sherman, should be more than enough for you to lift this off the shelf, look through the pages and make that decision for yourself.
In general, while I wasn’t totally blown away by it, I really did enjoy The Few. There is a definite potential there, and with the promise of many more twists and turns in future issues I will say only this: If they are anything like the reveal on the final panel then this series is definitely going to turn into something special.
If you want to find out more about THE FEW, make sure to check out our interview with series writer Sean Lewis by CLICKING HERE.
[Click to Enlarge]
The writer of this piece was: Andrew McGlinn
Andrew Tweets from @Jockdoom.