Wicked Chicken Queen is a story of birth and death, loneliness and loss, told in two parts. An isolated island community discovers an egg that hatches into an enormous chicken. The society flourishes under the chicken queen’s rule, but is eventually destroyed in her death throes. The mythical narrative of the chicken queen’s origin transitions into the narrator’s portrait of her own life in a modern city: coffee with her daughter, laying awake in bed at night thinking about her estranged husband, a lingering sense of incompleteness.
The comic consists of single-page illustrations accompanied by text. Alden depicts the constantly shifting geography of the island with fluid, spontaneous lines, guiding the eye in a winding path through the little vignettes of island life contained in each image. The use of graphite, complete with smudges and erasures, gives the comic a sense of immediacy, as if you’d pulled the pages out of the artist’s hands. Fans of Alden's work will not be disappointed with this trippy fairy tale.
(24 pages, black and white with color cover, 6.5" x 10.5", Retrofit Comics, $5.00)
Wicked Chicken Queen is available for purchase here.
Check out Sam Alden's website for more of his awesome work.