"One day, for no damn reason, the animals woke up." That's the tagline for Animosity, a new Aftershock Comics series by Marguerite Bennett and Rafael de Latorre, revealed this week at The Hollywood Reporter. It tells the apocalyptic story of a young girl and her talking dog making their way across an America where thinking, talking animals have become the norm.

Bennett offered her own synopsis on Twitter:


ANIMOSITY begins when one day, for reasons unknown, animals start thinking, start talking, and start taking revenge. Cows plead, hens murder their rooster, octopuses grab sushi knives in restaurants, pets tell their owners that their spouses are cheating. The orca in SeaWorld splashes from the tank and tells his trainer he can't deny his feelings for her any longer, will she marry him? The world descends into over-the-top chaos. In the midst of these insane, bombastic, blackly comedic backdrops, in New York City is a little girl. Her dog "wakes," turns to her and tells her, with utter purity and sincerity, that he loves her. We jump ahead, 1 year later -- there have been clashes between the United States government and the rise of the Animilitary (yeah, I said it). There is a complete food crises, the population is exploding, and we're in a total dystopia. The girl's parents have been killed, and her only living family member is her estranged brother, who works as a vet on the West Coast. The dog is now full grown, and has surpassed the little girl in intelligence and maturity. His life expectancy is far less than hers, and he knows he has to get the girl to her brother before he himself dies and leaves her stranded in this vicious new world. He is her father now, and the emotional momentum and sincerity of their story is what drives us through the insanity of this premise.


The way she spells out the story across a series of tweets makes it sound pretty fascinating, and Bennett's worked with similar juxtapositions of tone in books like InSeXts and Angela: Queen of Hel.

De Latorre is less of a known quantity at this point, but his cover for the first issue is extremely striking, with the emotions on the protagonists' faces spotlighted again a backdrop of menacing animals. There's also a variant cover by Kelsey Shannon, which embraces the weirdness of the premise with a crowd of animals displaying very human facial expressions.

Animosity #1 comes out August 3.


Variant Cover by Kelsey Shannon