Writer: Chase & Mark Poulton
Artists: Ryan Onorato
Letterer: Ryan Onorato
Cover: Ryan Onorato
Publisher: Artista Comics
I love you, pizza tree.
Writer Mark Poulton, author of A Cat Named Haiku, DC’s The Savage Hawkman and myriad others has combined forces with his son Chase, to provide us with the story of everyone’s secret wish; a tree that grows slices of pizza. Sounds good, no? But what if the pizza tree was just part of a secret Lovecraftian-esque plot to control humanity itself? Can Mark rescue Chase from the tree’s evil influence, and with the help of the local comic store owner, potentially save the world?
Poulton has crafted a story with his 7 y/o son that’s a Lovecraft-lite tale for children, and therefore, it only makes sense that I review it with my 5 y/o daughter, who shall for the purposes of this article be referred to as ‘F’.
The story begins as Chase wins a plush of P’thulhu, the Hawaiian god of sweet dreams…
F: Like Cthulhu, hah!
Yes, like Cthulhu, from a lucky dip vending machine at a seemingly innocuous pizza restaurant.
F: He wants to plant a pizza tree, and it grows a big monster tree made of pizza. I wanted to eat it.
Indeed, and after some time, the tree has become an attraction for the entire neighbourhood. Unfortunately, it also seems that Chase has developed an unhealthy addiction to the pizza from this tree, and when the true agenda of the cult of P’thulhu is revealed, it becomes a race against time…
F: Yes, it’s a bad tree and it wants to eat everyone!
Absolutely. Story wise, this comic is brisk and straightforward, designed primarily for younger readers, but with a sprinkling of adult references and ideas. It flows at a good pace, and does not overstay its welcome, leaving plenty of room for further stories (or sequels) in the future. F?
F: It was fun, I liked it. Are there any more? I would like to read about more food monsters.
No, not yet! The line art by Onorato is detailed, and uses striking yellow/blue themes for day and night respectively. His limited use of colour may put off some readers, but it is more than suitable here. Be sure to read to the end of the story to see the bonus art at the back, which includes a drawing from Chase himself. As for the lettering…
F: The words were easy to read and look at too. I liked it when he said nom, nom!
I could not have put it better myself.
Overall, this is a short and sweet horror-themed comic for younger readers, that is both entertainingly written and intricately drawn. Well worth a read with your little ones, and let’s be honest, we all secretly want our own pizza tree.