By: Brian Wood (Writer, Art), Riccardo Burchielli (Art)

Everything you’ve heard or read about DMZ is true. It’s an amazing book that grounds itself in a harsh reality that could play out on any industrialized nation. In the future, the U.S. is split in two, more specifically the northern eastern seaboard is split in two. To the north, you have the Free States. To the South, you have the United States. And Manhattan? Manhattan is the DMZ with thousands of people trapped on the island in a scary anything-goes, lawless environment.

In a nutshell, the story involves a member of the press being thrown onto this island and choosing to stay on his own volition after seeing the rest of his team violently slaughtered. He documents what he sees – the way people live, the atrocities, the smart ones who’ve managed to survive, but he eventually weaves himself into their society and that’s where things become interesting.

Brian Wood’s realistic look on survival in this type of environment is just jaw-dropping. And while the stories shine on their own, they would be no where as gritty were it not for the art. Brian Wood and Riccardo Burchielli bring the warzone to life with some incredibly detailed backdrops. I’ve never been to Manhatten, but it’s clear that these two artists have. My only problem with the story is that it’s never explained by America had a second civil war and what caused it. Hopefully, one of the next volumes explains the situation. (Grade: A)

-J. Montes