ARC Review: Devolution

DevolutionDevolution by Rick Remender
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

Release date: September 6, 2016

Every living creature on Earth has been devolved – the evolutionary clock turned back, reverting all life to odd mutations and prehistoric incarnations. The cities of man are little more than bloody territories ruthlessly dominated by tribal Neanderthals ruling from the backs of mammoths, packs of saber-toothed tigers, and giant man-eating insects. Raja, one of the few remaining “Still Sapien” humans, heads to San Francisco to find the antidote for the world-changing DVO-8 viral agent. But to cross the wasteland, she’ll have to convince the last pocket of humanity to join her quest… and survive the Nazi hillbillies that rule them through fear!

Following in the footsteps of many post-apocalyptic plotlines, this graphic novel really doesn’t have anything new to offer. Other than the reason for the scientists (it’s always the scientists *eyeroll*) to create a super-virus that decimates life on Earth as we know it; this time it is a need to eradicate religion. Cue shade! Apparently, humans are so stupid as to assume faith has anything to do with a gain or loss of humanity and try to create a virus that will help remove faith. Obviously, no scientific research went into this, because next thing you know, there are prehistoric creatures and monster-sized rodents wandering around. Our story begins with Raja (why give an ‘exotic’ boy name to a woman, I don’t understand), the daughter of the scientist responsible who is out searching for that serum to reverse the process.

The plot is substandard, derived somewhere from Mad Max Fury Road with none of the feminism. There is gratuitous nudity and power fantasies; women being debased (it is an actual word used in the storyboard at the end of the novel) and frequently harassed. The characters are all over-exaggerated caricatures, both in terms of personality and artwork. Speaking of the artwork, it was messy and scrawled, too dark to make out details and too obsessed with style and cool poses, rather than intelligent portrayal and substance. Jumps in the plot occurred without preamble, and the plot is, honestly, going nowhere with all the violence. I was rolling my eyes too often in this book to take even one ridiculous page seriously and my relief only came when I finally reached the end. A big NOPE for me.

Received a free galley from Diamond Book Distributors, via Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.

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