Broken World is in its final issue, so a lot happens with Elena. I think Broken World took a stab at something cool. The setting, a post-apocalyptic world, was nothing knew but the following Elena trying to find her family who were some of the chosen that got to leave Earth and start a new world, seemed to be something that I could get down with. Unfortunately, the balance between it all got lost. Elena is in deep trouble, she is pointing a gun at Ted in order to keep her friends, Emma and David, alive. In one moment, you want Emma to fire that gun. You feel her pain and you know that without this kill, Emma and David wouldn’t be safe. But what you quickly realize is that Emma and David were never safe to begin with. I love the struggles that Elena goes through with each situation. She feels conflicted as anyone reading the comic understands. What Frank J. Barbiere does so well, is allowing no one person to be right. You can’t trust anyone and in some aspects, Griffon seems right, in others Ted is right, and so on and so forth. It is hard to see black and white when everything is grey.
Now it is a matter of trusting your gut and going with it. This is exactly what Emma does in this issue. We see her character grow in an Elena kind of way. I wish we would have seen more characters grow within these four issues. Elena, who has been such a highlight, is pretty static to me. She does have a breakdown, but I think she has been having this all along. I wanted something more from her character. I wanted to see more of her family. The emotions behind her family situation seemed shadowed by the situations we saw upfront. So when Elena does breakdown, it makes the reader feel shorthanded.
What I am trying to say is that the whole last issue was rushed. I get that publishers have a say on the issue count, but going into the last issue, I was hoping for something bigger. Something more ambiguous. We get something that was expected in a story with this backdrop.
The art is great in this issue. Some gore has to be shown, but it shows a message. I have always been a fan of Christopher Peterson’s work on this series and how he has created these intense characters with strong emotions. Their attitudes and overall characterization come out and shine in every panel. Especially when dealing with Griffon and Ted. They move the plot, so even though Elena is our main gal, she is doing the same thing over and over again. Griffon and Ted spice things up, so to get their performances spot on makes everything run more smoothly.
Again the art was cool, but I wish the story didn’t have to rush through the ending. We could have explored some other things or even hyper focused on Elena and her family. I hope that Elena’s character can shine through into another piece of work, because she had a good story and good motives, but she needed a push with plot and overall reader connection.