of Hate takes on a grand sense of scale and scope from page one. The
opening prologue introduces readers to the world that Adrian Smith, writer and
artist of Chronicles, has so lovingly
created. A world marked by oppression and violence due to the capture and
torture of Mother, the physical manifestation of our idea of Mother Earth,
seeks an unlikely hero in character of Worm. A disfigured, tiny, almost-human
creature, Worm serves beings far more powerful and larger than he, who all serve
one ruler known simply as Tyrant. Tyrant nearly has the world on its knees,
begging for his mercy, and yet he still seeks to claim the rest of the land
through total war.
largely because of the phenomenal art style that Smith brings to the page. Each
panel feels as if it was pulled out of a hazy nightmare, aimed to disturb you,
the reader. Even the character of Worm, the protagonist, is frightening to look
at. But the unsettling character design engrossed me, and the sheer attention
to detail in each monster and inhuman creature lifted the world out of the
pages. The subtleties throughout these pages – vague resemblances to human-like
features, the crisp, clear presentation of a scene contrasted with blurry and
haunting shapes in other panels – all place readers into the world of Chronicles. It makes us believe that
even in a world of utter destruction, depravity, and unrecognizable life, the
battle between good and evil still exists, heroes can still rise, and we can
always find these heroes in the unlikeliest of places.
however, Chronicles goes through some
missteps. Deliberately light on the text, Chronicles
relies heavily on its imagery to impart crucial plot information and to set its
pacing and tone. Unfortunately, due to the sometimes-abstract nature of the art
style, ambiguity creeps in while reading the book, which caused me to
constantly refer back to earlier pages to see if I had missed any information
beforehand. Smith asks readers to devote complete and utter attention to the
world he has created, which is understandable. I want to sink my teeth into
this world, and I want to see Worm’s adventures unfold. That can be hard to
accomplish when adjusting to a new art style, however.
The artistic scope of this series is massive, and I would love to come back to
each release just to see more of this art style come alive. Though I was
confused for some of the read, I was also thoroughly engaged as my mind tried
to envision the environment that contained Worm and his party. This world is so
disgustingly beautiful that you owe it to yourself to give Chronicles of Hate at least a glance, and maybe a few midnight
terrors as a result.
can find Chronicles of Hate and other comics over at the Top Cow
Credit to Top Cow Comics
Geek-o-Rama received a copy of this book for the purpose of this review. All thoughts, comments and opinions are those of the individual reviewer.