Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Morning Glories #18

Written by Nick Spencer
Art by Joe Eisma

If there's one thing about Nick Spencer's terrific series Morning Glories that you can always count on, it's that there is always another layer to the story waiting to be uncovered.  And it seems that each new layer adds new intrigue and mystery to the title.

This month, instead of the conclusion to the P.E. arc that we were expecting, we receive an issue that focuses on Jun, the quietest and most enigmatic of the main characters.  It's worth remembering that Jun's name is really Hisao, and that he switched names with his brother Jun, who is also a student at Morning Glories Academy.  Hisao has been thoroughly brainwashed by the faculty at the school, and it's been very unclear as to just what Jun's role in this series was going to be.

This issue begins a few years before the start of the series, where Jun (still called Hisao at that point) is being trained at an MGA-like facility.  We see him shooting a rifle, and then getting into a fight with his rival, a boy named Guillaume when he tries to take his target to Abraham, who appears to run this facility.  At that point, we see a glimpse of Ms. Darabont, the head teacher at MGA negotiating with Abraham for six students, one of whom is Guillaume.

In the present, Jun gets into a fight with Hisao, who believes that the strange events of a few issues back, which resulted in all the faculty and guards vanishing from the school, is his fault.  They fight, before Jun is rescued by Guillaume. 

Apparently, Guillaume and Jun are there on some kind of mission to rescue Abraham.  It's all a little complicated (not this series!), but also very interesting.  I would need to go back through some back issues, but I'm pretty sure that we saw Abraham visit each of the core cast members in flashbacks, but I'd assumed that he was recruiting them for the MGA, not for something else.  Also of interest is the relationship between Jun and Guillaume, which I'm sure could get the book banned in South Carolina...

Once again, Spencer delivers a compelling and mysterious book that raises more questions than it answers, but that is also a master class in character writing.

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