Joe Bliven

Hip Hop Family Tree Vol. III
By Ed Piskor


October 27th, 2020

The third volume manages to wrangle itself in a bit more than the previous books which has its positives and negatives. On the positive end we have a much smoother narrative that doesn't jump around so manically and more time is spent showing how the characters are interconnected. It really feels like all of the major players are finally coming together and the Avengers are really assembling in this one. On the negative side it almost feels like the hip-hop world is getting smaller, while we know it isn't -it is in fact growing to massive heights- the narrower focus of this volume makes it feel like hip-hop is only happening in a few specific pockets when viewed alongside Volume I. One of my complaints in Volume II was that flashforwards use the same Jack Kirby art style but without the newsprint filter to show the time change, which is jarring and unattractive. In this book that problem is handled masterfully and I must give Ed a big peace sign for this one. In a flashforward to Ice-T's career in the 90s Piskor switches it up with a less pronounced filter over a Rob Liefeld pastiche. This was absolutely the best call, way to handle that perfectly Mr. Piskor. Another phenomenal entry into the series, I'm sad to know that I only have the final volume left to read. Happy 11th Birthday Elena!