We’re back for another installment of ‘Trees’ and while the last issue seemed to concentrate on what was going on in the arctic, the political state of Somalia, and an old painter who acts like a ninja, only one of those story lines crossed over. Thankfully it was the old man who acts like a ninja because I’ve been dying to know what that was about! In this issue we learn a little more about him as well as the young artist from China that was featured in the first issue.
After a little look at how humanity was dealing with the Trees in the last issue and how they might be making changes in the Arctic, this issue primarily focused on the characters. There wasn’t a lot of movement forward on the giant structures covering our planet and reaching to the sky, just good old fashioned character development. With Ellis it was clear that it would be coming but I was hoping for a little bit more on the mystery of the world that our characters now live in.
That and I wouldn’t minded more of Jason Howard’s view of the trees themselves. Even without the alien invaders taking over the landscape, Howard’s art was still top notch and quickly draws you in to complete the story that Ellis is crafting.
In this book we follow two sets of characters in two places. In China we see the artist Chenglei and his landlord’s child Zhen. We see them start to get to know one another and clearly Zhen is set to drag Chenglei out of his shell as he is shown to be a bit of a recluse.
On the other side of the world we see the elder artist from the previous issue who turns out to be a Professor as well as Eligia, the local gang leader’s girlfriend who he quickly disarmed last issue. She finds him and stalks him back to his home. His house brings up a lot of questions about the man as well on the vast differences between the exterior and the interior. We quickly find out though that the main reason she has been following him is because she wants to learn how to disappear the way that he did. For his end of the spectrum he wants to atone for what he’s done to women in his youth and seems willing to help her education along though I suspect she’s going to be learning a lot more than she expected over the course of the series.
Overall the third issue was enjoyable and I loved the character development. It didn’t live up to my enjoyment of the first two books, though. I think that was just a lack of any development on learning more about the aliens. As the first book stated, Humanity has basically moved on and for the most part doesn’t pay much attention to them at this point as it’s been ten years. Still, being new to us I’d like to know more!
Offhand, I’d just like to point out that my complaint is my impatience showing for having to wait for the next issue over any real critique about the comic.
Writer: Warren Ellis
Artist: Jason Howard