Written By: Chelsea Cain
Art By: Kate Niemczyk
Colors By: Rachelle Rosenberg
Letters By: Joe Caramagna
Man Eaters showed so much promise, but we’ve reached issue 6 and I’m losing patience. Most comics are able to spin a whole arc in fewer issues than Man Eater’s current run, yet Man Eaters has barely finished its opening scene. I am 100% the target audience for this comic: I’m a feminist, I enjoy an indie comic, I like comics that play around with the format and I really love stories with teenage protagonists. Yet I am getting bored.
By this point in Man Eaters I know more about the products that are available in the world of the comic, than anything about our main characters. Reading Man Eaters is like watching a movie trailer, it’s like it’s constantly edited to avoid spoilers and to make sure absolutely every element of this story has a cliffhanger.
But I want to be invested in these characters, and I want to get stuck in so I can care about what is going on. And this comic is not giving me anything to do that with. At this point Maude is annoying me because she seems to have really endangered her friends but has not explained her motivation awfully well. She seems surprised by the consequences, but then… isn’t that what she was doing this for? It seems Maude’s feelings about what’s happening to her change per issue. And that’s not a progression of the characters feelings, because we’re never given a clear timeline, so as far as I can tell, each time we’re referring to the same moment, and each time Maude feels differently: scared, devious, excited, nonchalant, who knows?
I think this comic is meant to be read as collected volumes, rather than single issues. Luckily, volume one of Man Eaters comes out today as well! Collecting issues 1-4, it feels much more like what a single issue is meant to do. And looking back over volume one, I think that if I had picked that up, I would’ve enjoyed it and been intrigued to keep reading. Because at the heart of this, this comic has got all the elements that should by rights be brilliant. But so far it hasn’t managed to get there yet, and that is disappointing.
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