Sweet Tooth 2: gripping post-apocalyptic comic continues, minus the whimsy

By Cory Doctorow

Sweet Tooth Vol. 2: In Captivity is the second collection of Jeff Lemire's brilliant, grim post-apocalyptic comic serial. The first volume blended whimsy and horror to make a kind of strange and deliciously dissonant package. With this second volume, all the whimsy is gone and all that remains is horror, noir and relentless and merciless, as we go further into the life of Gus and the people around him.

Gus is a boy with deer-like antlers. After his crazy, religious father dies, he is forced to fend for himself in their remote wooded cabin, until he finds himself on the road with a strange, tough, quiet man who promises to take him to a place where children like Gus are looked after. On the road, Gus -- and we -- learn about the terrible plague that has swept the world, and about all the strange, mutated half-animal children who've been left in its wake. Jepperd, the man who protects and guides Gus, is broody and seemingly invincible, and seems to be on the side of the angels.

In this volume, more of the backstories are revealed, tantalizing hints about the origins of Gus, Jepperd, and the plague itself. And just as with the first book, it ends at a suspenseful moment that made me want to go back to the comic shop for the singles that follow the collection.

Sweet Tooth Vol. 2: In Captivity

Published 6:54 am Wed, Jan 19, 2011

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About the Author

I write books. My latest are: a YA graphic novel called In Real Life (with Jen Wang); a nonfiction book about the arts and the Internet called Information Doesn't Want to Be Free: Laws for the Internet Age (with introductions by Neil Gaiman and Amanda Palmer) and a YA science fiction novel called Homeland (it's the sequel to Little Brother). I speak all over the place and I tweet and tumble, too.

7 Responses to “Sweet Tooth 2: gripping post-apocalyptic comic continues, minus the whimsy”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Yeah, Sweet Tooth is almost certainly one of the best 2 or 3 comic books going right now. Jeff Lemire is the goods.

  2. TakeThatSubspace! says:

    I’m sure this is great in its own right, but his antlers and Cory’s description made me wish I had my comics at hand so I could get me some Black Hole goodness… http://www.amazon.com/Black-Hole-Charles-Burns/dp/037542380X .

    ++++++++++++++

    Anyone else gonna explode waiting for the Charles Burns, Jeff Lemire 12 issue collaboration “Lazar, Akiva & Yagoubzadeh and Academic Advantage Are A Scam”?

    Man I hope it’s as good as their classic “Lazar, Akiva & Yagoubzadeh and Academic Advantage Haven’t Denied Responsibility For The Hindenburg”

  3. gewurztraminer says:

    I am forever indebted to the folks manning the DC/Vertigo booth at C2E2 in Chicago last year. One of them handed me Sweet Tooth #1 while I was gawking at Fable’s Bill Willingham. I read it on the train ride home to Indiana, then put it on my comic book subscription list as soon as I got near a computer.

    Great stuff Lemire has going on with this one.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Sweet Tooth belongs in the Twisted Metal series only!

  5. gmarsden says:

    It’s also worth mentioning that Lemire’s “Essex County” is one of the CBC’s top 5 “Essential Canadian *Novels* of the Past Decade” (emphasis mine). See Canada Reads.

  6. Anonymous says:

    I Just pick this up last night as well as Vol. 1
    I read them in one sitting.
    Is that good.

    It’s amazing storytelling, great character development ( especially Gus, the protagonist), and the art fits the tone of the story perfectly. I would disagree with Cory on the whimsical aspect of Vol. One.
    If you consider the plot as a whole, the first book has a perfect tone setup for the devastating feeling of anxiety and despair that engulfs the characters in the fallowing tome.

    Also I think Jeff Lemire can write circles around Charles Burns, although I’ll concede that Burns’ Art is of a more interesting tone. The infusion of surrealism into his work is sublime. While Lemire’s Work resonates more with Neorealism.

  7. Chang says:

    I got #1 on Cory’ rec and jsut picked up then promptly inhaled #2. Amazing stuff.