Chew: The Omnivore Edition, Vol. 1
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Chew: The Omnivore Edition, Vol. 1 (Chew #1-10)

4.26 of 5 stars 4.26  ·  rating details  ·  1,333 ratings  ·  97 reviews
Tony Chu is a detective with a secret. A weird secret. Tony Chu is cibopathic, which means he gets psychic impressions from whatever he eats. It also means he's a hell of a detective - as long as he doesn't mind nibbling on the corpse of a murder victim to figure out whodunit and why. He's been brought on by the Special Crimes Division of the FDA, the most powerful law enf...more
Hardcover, 264 pages
Published August 24th 2010 by Image Comics (first published July 2010)
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Jeffrey Keeten
I don't read very many comics (do they call them comics still?),but when I saw the premise for this series I could not resist. "Tony Chu is Cibopathic, which means he gets psychic impressions from whatever he eats." The only thing that he can eat and not be subjected to a Johnny Mnemonic download overload moment are beets.

keanu-reeves-as-johnny-mnemonic 2

I like beets, but I know that it wouldn't take me long to develop a passionate abhorrence of the rather unique taste of that particular vegetable. Too much of a good thing is...more
Mark Desrosiers
There's lots to like about this comic -- gore, vomit, tits, vampires -- yet there's a safety-first cynicism underlying the whole enterprise that plummets it into a goofy Establishment sitcomic. Buddy-cop drollery, jail-rape-evasion wackiness, coprophage-riffing -- it's all here, but just, I don't know, too obviously staged and plotted. Even worse, despite its premise (where eating chicken is outlawed by the government due to some mysterious avian flu whatnot), there are zero serious political or...more
[Name Redacted By Goodreads Because Irrelevant to Review]
A strange and gruesome tale of law enforcement in an alternate universe where a supposed bird-flu pandemic killed millions and the F.D.A. has since become the single most powerful arm of the U.S. Government. The art reminds me of the work of Sam Kieth and the setting reminds me of...well...a parody of the alternate universe on "Fringe". I'm enjoying this series, and especially I love how odd elements which at first seem to be one-liners or sight-gags wind up becoming EXTREMELY important later on...more
It has a good premise, and gets points for originality, but I think I'm starting to show my age on this. It felt like I was reading some bullshit teenage wankfest. Everything boils down to poop jokes, gross out moments, and extreme violence, which believe it or not I'm fine with, but there needs to be something more. Instead, what little is actually here is a constant barrage of asshole characters. The book starts introducing the main character and his partner. His partner is an unlikeable assho...more
Initially I was drawn to Chew, because who could really resist a comic procedural drama whose main agent solves crimes by eating all sorts of nasties (since as a "cibopath" he gets psychic impressions from anything he eats)? I wasn't disappointed, as Chew is one of those works that actually succeeds with dark, absurd humor, and the premise is definitely creative. The thinly-veiled satire about government control, conspiracies and questionable enforcement, as well as the "clean food" and foodie b...more
Finally, an Image book that lives up to the hype.

Oddly enough, it's taken me a little while to warm up to the art, which is supposed to be the selling point on this book -- I suppose, as usual, that it just felt too slick. But the character designs are amazing, even though for the most part it's just folks in street clothes.

I think what really impresses me, though, is that there's a great high-concept elevator pitch, a dark comedy, a slapstick cartoon, and a super-complicated mystery story all h...more
This comic was awesome, as long as you don't eat anything while you read it. xD
Ryan Mishap
A disgustingly humorous speculative detective story with someone's tongue firmly in cheek.

Cop Tony Chu doesn't eat much because he gets psychic impressions from everything he swallows. When a drop of blood in his soup leads him to a serial killer [utterly disgusting tidbit deleted], he soon finds himself working for the FDA--the most powerful law enforcement agency in the U.S. since bird flu killed 28 million people. Now he's tracking the mover's and shakers of the underground bird trade instea...more
Really fun - art style was a bit mainstream but the storyline and concept really offbeat, surprising and intriguing. Endearing characters and well drawn relationships - especially between Chu and his brother, and his bionic partner. The potential romantic tension with the food writer was poorly depicted... could have been much more charming. Also want to see more of Chu's family. Really curious where the alien aspect goes... On the whole, the book is a bit "Pushing Daisies", buddy cop dramedy, z...more
Jennifer Koudelka
Well. This was one of the strangest things I've ever read in my life. And nonsensical and confusing and gross.



"So Jen," I hear you say, "Why on Earth did you read this, then?" Well, for one thing I generally LOVE things this strange and weird. Th...more
Ryan Tandy
Philadelphia cop Tony Chu has a special talent; as one of only three cibopaths in the world Tony is able to obtain psychic information simply from taking a bite out something, be that an apple, a hamburger or a murder suspect. In a world where bird flu has led to a ban on chicken, and a black market for poultry attracts the deadliest kinds of criminal, this sort of talent can come in handy and Tony is headhunted by the Special Crimes Division of the FDA, where he soon discovers a world of intern...more
Tony Clavelli
Chew is a wonderful mess. It embraces that, and I have too. There are certainly things about Chew which are a bit unfavorable, and clichés abound--but I feel like with the invention of the premise and absolute insanity that follows, I can't be totally dissuaded by these. Chew is about food at its core, but that almost acts more of a backdrop for the crazy story to unfold in. And even where there are clichés, some are undercut--like when the vulgar and racist, cardboard cut-out "doesn't play by t...more
Rebecca Ann
Talk about mixed feelings. This graphic novel series is so original! Agents who can feel/see the past of the food they ingest, a food critic who can make you taste the food she reviews, vampires, murder mystery and a nation-wide (maybe world-wide?) ban on chicken. It seems from that description that the story would be a mess, but it actually meshes quite well in a disturbing, nauseating, cannibalistic way. I'd suggest this primarily for teen boys due to the rampant gross-out humor (barfing, eati...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Awesome graphic novel - I really enjoyed the plot, artwork, and the many creative ideas used. I would say this is in the top five graphic novels I have ever read. Now, it is about a cop that can learn many things from tasting/eating anything (except for beets); for example, how an animal or human lived, how it was killed, who killed them. There is some gruesome stuff, but nothing too bad, quite often it's the idea that's gross more than the actual artwork or what is pictured. For someone like me...more
Dan Sussman
As a kid, I ate, breathed and drank comics for several years, then outgrew them, and then forgot them. Flash forward 20 or 30 years, and comics have morphed into "graphic novels" -- less pulpy, much slicker and way more expensive (What this country needs is a good 12 cent comic book). In the late 1980s, Art Spiegelman's "Maus" became the first graphic novel to be taken seriously as literature, and one of my favorite authors, Michael Chabon, is both a comic fan and writer (as well as being the au...more
4.5 stars

I decided to read Chew The Omnivore Edition Vol. 1 for the Literary Exploration Challenge.

I'm not a big graphic novel reader, having only read three or four in my lifetime and purely on the strong recommendations of friends. However the premise of this book interested me enough to give it a try and it definitely didn't disappoint.

Tony Chu is a Cibopath, a man that gets psychic impressions from the food he eats. He's the third known Cibopath in existence. The story follows Chu as he wo...more
Jonathan Schildbach
Great concept for a detective--Tony Chu is a cibopath, which means he can get information from things he eats. As a detective solving murders, that sometimes means eating bits of corpses. There are many entertaining touches in the writing and plotting. For instance, Chu ends up working for the FDA--which has become the most powerful police agency on the planet, full of rogue agents abusing their power. The plot is rather involved, centered on a government conspiracy utilizing a bird flu scare to...more
Sam Quixote
Chew is an excellent new comic book series by writer John Layman and artist Rob Guillory. It features a detective called Tony Chu who is a cibo path which means he can gain knowledge of whatever he eats - for example if he eats an apple he knows where it was grown and what fertilisers were used; if he eats a hamburger then he finds out about the slaughterhouse conditions and how the cow died. He uses this "gift" in his policework to find out who murdered who and why. The only trouble is when he'...more
Jenn Tested
Before I even start telling you about it, I must warn you that Chew is not for those with weak stomachs. I'm sure you can tell just by looking at the front cover of that "delectable" finger on his plate. Chew introduces us to police officer Tony Chu. Tony is not your run of the mill cop. Tony is a cibopathic which means that he can see the history of anything he eats. For instance, Tony will see the slaughter of a cow whenever he bites into a hamburger.

When a routine stakeout goes awry, Tony fin...more
While I've given each of Chew, Vol. 1: Taster's Choice and Chew, Vol. 2: International Flavor four stars separately, this oversized hardcover gets an extra star for collecting the first 2 volumes of this insanely brilliant series together, and in a bigger page size to boot. Here then are the reviews originally written for the individual volumes:

Chew, Vol. 1: Taster's Choice

The inaugural story arc in this planned 60-issue run introduces us to a world where : [1] the FDA is the supreme law enforce...more
Loved it the story was fast paced and moved a long with a great cast of characters. My favorites where the ones like Tony Chu with fictitious abilities.

(minor spoilers about 2 characters)

(view spoiler)...more
Adrian Lopez
Apr 17, 2011 Adrian Lopez rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Adrian by: Jerry Jimenez
As a foodie, it was really easy for me to fall in love with this series. Tony Chu is a "cibopath". That means he can take a bite of something and he gets a feeling in his head of the items origins. This gift makes him indispensable during a time in which the government has banned chicken and chicken products due to a massive avian flu outbreak that killed 23 million. Chu later works for the FDA, which because of the aforementioned, is the biggest government body in existence. The story goes from...more
So Tony is cibopathic, which means he gets psychic impression from whatever he eats. So now all he can eat is beet juice. (blech) But now he is a detective for the FDA solving crimes by taking a bite out of the victim. Gross and awesome at the same time. Oh yeah and basically a chicken prohibition is going on and his partner is a cyborg. Sweet. Will definitely be picking up more of these.
Being a gritty, morbid, yet painfull histerical work of art, Chew is one of the best comics I've read in awhile. There is just a certain warm yet halariously grotesque tone to it that is remarkably sucessful in pulling in the reader to the point where I simply couldn't put the book down until I finished it! I really loved this book! The art is so unique and fresh (or should I say "putrified"), the comedy is warm, and the plot is juicy. The concept of the series is so unique, one can't simply wal...more
Comic books are full of heroes: superheroes, detectives, gods, goddesses, regular human beings, monsters, aliens, and more. But I think this is a first for the genre: meet Tony Chu: Cibopath. What’s a Cibopath? Someone who gets psychic impressions from whatever he eats, meaning he can sense where the item has been and what it has been through. Odd enough for you? Welcome to the world of Chew. I have been meaning to pick this book up, but for some reason I hadn’t until recently. Chew has won nume...more
My reading mojo was slaughtered thanks to A Discovery of Witches so I needed something guaranteed to make me giggle. I recently purchased the 3 Omnivore volumes at Comic Con this year, and had them signed my Layman. They have been sitting in my bookcase begging to be read. So in my desperation, I grabbed volume 1.

Because my memory is so bad, I didn't remember much of this, so it was like I was reading it for the first time. I took my time with every page and every illustration. Because I have s...more
Sandra (thebooktrend)
THAT. WAS. AWESOME! It was so entertaining! (I don't know if I would recommend it to those with weak stomachs)
It's original, clever, and entertaining as all hell. If only the plot line wasn't so ridiculous.
Better than I expected it took me two read troughs to appreciate this. First read I thought it was a bit overrated though the concept was a fab one with a whole lot of wasted potential. The story gets a bit muddy at times as plot threads seem to get dropped left and right but the quirky art styling and fun ideas keep the pace going. Some issues though definitely feel a bit muddled and how vampires fit in the whole mess or what ever happened to Savoy are but a few of the zillions of lingering que...more
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