High School Dystopia

The Kids of Morning Glories

It’s easy to miss out on good comics. Especially when you’re on a tight budget like me. Morning Glories, for example. I purposely skipped this comics because I can’t afford to add it on my pull list, and I thought it wasn’t good enough that I should take another title off my list just to accommodate it. But, then, this book became everyone’s favorite comics in 2010. So, curious, I bought the first collected trade (which collects #1-#6). Turns out, this book is a gem and its entertainment value far exceeds all the superhero comics that are on my pull list.

Morning Glories got story, a well-crafted one filled with mystery and intrigue. It’s a tale of six intelligent teenagers who were chosen to become scholars in the Morning Glory Academy, a prestigious prep school whose curriculum also includes torture and murder just to bring out the best in their students. A few minutes into this book and it already reminded me of Lost, Runaways and The Prisoner –all of which are good things. It’s basically a teen drama that’s happening in a high school dystopia.

The progression of the story is slow and suspenseful. But that is what will keep you glued to this title. The more you read this series, the more questions you’ll ask. After six issues, we still don’t know what’s really going on. We don’t know who’s the real enemy, and what they really want with our protagonists. I don’t think we won’t get the answers soon, and that’s part of its allure. It’s writer, Nick Spencer, did a good job in keeping the mysteries under a tight lid. Yet, even though this slowed the story’s progress, he still managed to keep it interesting with his characters.

There are many aspects of the book that are interesting (the dystopian fiction references, for one). But people who read Morning Glories will agree that the characters here are the title’s highest point. Six kids, all intelligent and all share the same birthday. But, beyond that, their personalities are very distinct from one another, and they all break the stereotypes. Sure, the anti-stereotype might have been forced (a blond physics genius, an Indian cheerleader and a kick-ass Asian). But the characters still feels fresh, thanks to their smart dialogues and dark humor.

Morning Glories Vol.1 is a very good read. I haven’t read any comics as good as this since Chew. It has a lot of elements –the teen drama of Runaways, the dystopian setting of The Prisoner, and the mysteries and pulp of Lost– that held my attention. Even though the pacing of the story is slow, Nick Spencer’s writing kept me entertained. Joe Eisma’s illustration is also pretty good and is very consistent all throughout the story arc. So, if you haven’t read this comics yet, go add it into your list. I already did, and I even canceled my beloved Secret Warriors just to include Morning Glories.

Score: A-

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2 Responses to High School Dystopia

  1. gillboard says:

    will read this book next week. can’t wait to get my hands on this title.

  2. daredevilry says:

    reminds me partly of freakangels, 12(?) children born on the same day.

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