I did not have any expectations before I started reading We3. The cover piqued my interest because I was trying to figure out why domestic animals were strapped into robotic war gear. After reading and examining all 116 pages of the book, half of which contain graphic images of violence and gore, I couldn’t shake the one page that impacted me the most: 73. Page 73 illustrates the dog (Bandit) and the rabbit (Pirate) sitting next to each other on a hill, facing a dreary, lonely-looking scene below. Bandit sits with his head down, eyes closed; a miserable dog, indeed. He repeats “bad dog” four times, referring to himself and his actions. The misery, sadness and remorse seen in Bandit on this page really impacted me because we see the conflict between what the animals were trained to do and who they really are. Their violent, destructive behavior is not natural- especially because they are domesticated animals. And it’s not just Bandit who is looking forlorn; Pirate does not appear to be in high spirits either. The corners of his mouth are turned downward, his lips slightly parted and eyes reflecting a sense of loss or being lost. The cat stands behind them, saying “Home?” The entire page is uses a murky gray to color the setting, with twinges of tan-ish brown and dull green. The colors aren’t too dark, because think the illustrator wanted to show these animals stuck in a limbo between light and darkness, foreshadowing that the story could go either way (positive or negative ending). These themes of “home” and “bad dog” and the tone of sadness shown on this one page illustrate the overall theme of the story: that these animals are not where they belong and they are not performing the roles they should be performing. Their warrior personas go against nature, and the effects expand to the animals themselves but also to the environment and people around these animals.

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