Mawrth Valliis

EPHK. Image, $14.99 trade paper (128p) ISBN 978-1-5343-2054-3
A rebellious fighter pilot chases down her enemy in this sexy, ultra-stylized sci-fi cat-and-mouse adventure that’s told entirely in an original Martian language. After annihilating almost all opponents in a dogfight, the unnamed protagonist disobeys orders in an effort to catch the one that got away. Between action scenes, she encounters unexpected galactic dangers and incomprehensible mysteries. When her foe becomes a savior, together they get caught up in a Black Mirror-esque twist. EPHK’s art style puts a glowing modern spin on classic sci-fi, with bold character designs and thickly applied lines, mixing organic and geometric backdrops. Many pages could stand alone as pinups—and while not overdone, the pilots do boast wasplike figures, with plenty of convenient camera angles showcasing their curves. While the chase ends in an enticing reveal, it’s ultimately more style over narrative substance. The entirely Martian dialogue and thought-bubbles are a cool touch, which put weight on the sound effects (still written out in roman “boop” and “bleeps”) for tension-building. Overall, the gimmick keeps readers at a muted distance, acting as another art element rather than providing insight into the protagonists’ motivations. This chase may trip on some hurdles, but it’s also serious and innovative eye candy that should catch its rightful share of attention. (July)
Reviewed on : 06/10/2021
Release date: 07/01/2021
Genre: Comics
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