REVIEW: ‘Middlewest,’ Issue #17

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Middlewest #17

Middlewest #17 is published by Image Comics, written by Skottie Young, art by Jorge Corona, colors by Jean-Francois Beaulieu and colors by Nate Piekos. With the caravan having arrived at the farm, and the ethol fields ablaze, the final reckoning with Raider has come. But can Maggie and company get all the kids to safety? What final gambit does Rider have up his sleeve? And is he prepared to face the consequences if he pushes Abel too far?

When the comic industry as a whole got the pencils down order, we were all upset. And while there are numerous comics I personally did not want to wait for, there was only one I dreaded the pause for. Middlewest has been, month in and month out, one of the most consistently emotional comics it has ever been my pleasure to read. And I can’t be happier to have it back.

Middlewest #17 is everything you want a lead up to a finale to be. It builds the tension of what is to come perfectly. It gives most of its primary players an opportunity to to have one last say before things go down, and ends on a cliffhanger that is as rocking as it is inevitable. But the true stroke of genius in Middlewest #17 is who Young chooses to place the focus on for this story. And no, it’s not Abel, but Maggie.

Middlewest #17

Ever since her first introduction, Maggie has walked with a shadow cast over her. She has always had the look of one riddled with guilt about her past. Young take some time to reveal more of who Maggie has been, and how her choices have come to define her. Her failures extend mostly from her willingness to look the other way. To permit people like Raider to get away with all they have been doing. With everything that has been coming to light for many over the past several weeks Maggie’s choice to no longer be passive is both timely and impactful. I can only hope that Maggie strength to see her errors, acknowledge and grow from them are not a unique quality.

Just as Young’s writing continues to deliver all the emotional strength I’ve come to expect in Middlewest #17, so too does Corona’s art. Every moment, whether angry, bittersweet or hurtful, is forced before the reader. Demanding that you bare witness to what is to come. Corona’s skill at keeping the viewpoint right in the middle of everything is excellent as always. I could almost feel the wind swirl around me, and feel the heat from the blaze.

And while Corona’s art is gorgeous it is only improved with Beaulieu’s wonderful color work. The color palettes at work in each panel only heighten every emotion contained within them. Strengthening an already polished visual presentation.

Finally, Piekos delivers a superb lettering performance. Placement is spot on, and basic tricks like bolding and font sizing are used to perfection.

By the end of Middlewest #17 the stage is set. The final issue is prepared for with all the skill and perfection I have come to expect. This issue’s delivery only heightens my eagerness for the finale, while also making me dread having to say goodbye once it comes.

Middlewest #17 is available June 24th wherever comics are sold.

 

MiddleWest #17
5

TL;DR

By the end of Middlewest #17 the stage is set. The final issue is prepared for with all the skill and perfection I have come to expect. This issue’s delivery only heightens my eagerness for the finale, while also making me dread having to say goodbye once it comes.