Middlewest #12 is published by Image Comics, written by Skottie Young, art by Jorge Corona, colors by Jean-Francois Beaulieu, and letters by Nate Piekos. Following Abel and Bobby’s abduction by Raider Farms in the last issue, Fox returns to the fair to get help. But who will come to the two children’s aid? And what awaits them at Raider Farms?
Middlewest #12 spends its time establishing new places and getting characters where they need to be for the story going forward. The bulk of this issue is set up, but it is certainly needed. The emotional roller coaster of recent issues was starting to become a blur of places and events. This issue explains one of the most intriguing aspects of the world of Middlewest, that has been in the background the whole series but we just now have received a name for; ethol.
Those large purple cylinders seen on the sides of buildings throughout the series are filled with a substance called ethol. While that is all we are given about it here I’m eager for more about this visual oddity that appears throughout the story. Middlewest #12’s revelation has finally brought this aspect of its world into focus. I was beginning to wonder if it would simply remain a visual curiosity of the story or not. Seems I just needed to be a bit more patient.
Even with Middlewest #12 being a bridge story there is still some rough moments in store. No time is wasted establishing what awaits the young duo at Raider Farms. Young understands what makes a character intimidating. The newest member of Middlewest’s ensemble seems to be the personification of “walk softly and carry a big stick”. This approach serves as a stark contrast to the rage-fueled intimidation we’ve experienced from many of the antagonists so far.
Middlewest #12 also treats us to more snippets surrounding the history between Jeb and Maggie. The rocky interactions the two continually have are brought more into focus here. This detailing of the past helps to further give Middlewest the feeling of being alive. As the past continues to play a roll in present events. As nothing ever truly happens in a vacuum. Young’s going out of his way to illustrate this through Maggie and Jeb shows off another level of his attention to details.
And with every new locale comes new ways for Corona to flex his creative muscles. Initial impressions say the farms are going to fit right in with the rest of Middlewest’s world. The cohesiveness of the world continues in Middlewest #12 perfectly. It has impressed me to no end how well elements continue to come together seamlessly for this fictional setting.
Reaching the end of Middlewest #12 simply left me eager for more. The newest baddie feels like a whole new style of problems for Abel. And with his growing struggle to contain the storm within him, this new antagonist could cause far more trouble then he realizes for the world of Middlewest.
Middlewest #12 is available now at comic book stores everywhere.
Reaching the end of Middlewest #12 simply left me eager for more.