Release Date: 5/28/14
Words: Warren Ellis
Pictures: Jason Howard
Giant alien trees have invaded the earth, sprouting up all over the planet. They appear suddenly and make no demands. In fact, the human race is ignored… for ten years. The story begins here. Ten years after the trees appeared, life has moved on. There is a certain serenity to life after the initial chaos calmed down. There have been no demands, let alone acknowledgement, from this alien invasion, and the world has normalized.
Trees #1 opens with these lines, “Ten years after they landed. All over the world. And they did nothing, standing on the surface of the Earth like trees, exerting their silent pressure on the world, as if there were no-one here and nothing under foot. Ten years since we learned that there is intelligent life in the universe, but that they did not recognize us as intelligent or alive.”
It was here that the hook was inserted and I can’t stop thinking about it. It could be all the Fringe binging I’ve been doing lately, but this is a really good book. I’ve been taken in. If you’ve been on the hunt for that “something different,” look no further.
Warren Ellis can weave the beginnings of an excellent, intriguing character driven story in just a few pages. He introduces this wild “what if” scenario and goes on to show four different points of view from four seemingly very different people in their respective parts of the globe. Perspective is important to the story and Ellis uses it to explore the nature of humanity to adapt to new situations. I suspect that attribute of adaptability isn’t entirely a good thing.
It may seem as though these four different stories are disconnected but Howard’s art ties it all together. He uses repetition such as when each story is introduced, the character’s setting is shown in a landscape that depicts at least two trees. Again, perspective plays an important role in how the trees are seen, how the situation is viewed. Also interesting is the amount of detail at the right times. On one page you may notice the humility of the human race at the foot of this giant tree or from a distance looking down or up and on the next you may notice how the details around the trees are different from story to story depending on where the tree sprouted.
I don’t like spoiling anything so I should stop now, but I also can’t stop thinking this one out. There is so much potential in this story, so many possibilities. This is one of those books you don’t want to trade wait. There is enjoyment in the ride, a beauty. In being forced to wait issue to issue the reader can indulge in the slow digestion of the story. Those are the best kind.