The graphic novel, “Smurf Salad,” feels like it could have easily been an episode of the Smurfs Hanna-Barbera cartoon series that was immensely popular in the 80s. Farmer Smurfs crops have been less than smurfy, so Papa Smurf whips up a concoction to make them grow before he leaves the village to find a more permanent solution to the problem. In his absence, Chef Smurf convinces Farmer to use the entire mixture on the crops causing them to grow abundantly. Shortly thereafter, Smurfs start turning into living vegetables one by one causing a panic throughout the village.
The art in this story is truly phenomenal as it is with any Smurf comic. The Smurfs as vegetables are very cleverly done and add a lot of extra colors to the pages. Every panel has something to look at though. There are a few panels towards the end of the story that Smurf fans should study for callbacks to iconic Smurf artifacts from previous stories. This story is great for younger readers with the silliness of the Smurf transformations. However, adults might find a deeper meaning in how panic settles in when disease spread and how rational thought leads to solutions.
Overall, this is a fun Smurf story along with the previously published story, “The Aerosmurf.” It’s great to have these stories published for English reading audiences.