A review by Hafsa Alkhudairi
Plutona is a story that explores children’s relationship to the existence of superheroes and their relationship to death. Emi Lenox and Jeff Lemire’s story presents a bunch of kids exploring who they are, who they want to be, and what they see themselves becoming. However, Plutona is not only a story of the kids, but also a story of how these kids were able to interact with a superhero and their reaction to that. It is an interwoven narrative with two story lines and one ending. The story has mystery, adventure, merriment, insecurities, confidence, mistakes, and resolution. There is death and life showing how messy both can be.
This contrasts well with the softness of the art and the brightness of the colours. The art is seamless through the trade even if the events are taking place in the past or present. The only thing that changed the tone was the darkness of the night, which is understandable. Another change in tone is experienced through the character’s home lives and familial relationships. The art also changes from adults to the kids and the level of tiredness each character is experiencing. The beauty of that is the realistic nature of the characterization. This in turn compliments the story perfectly. The colours also compliment the story, even though it is contradicting in the form of brightness versus darkness of the narrative. However, this reflects the perceived innocent nature of kids and their love for those they deem “good”.
The story progresses and shows that kids aren’t always as innocent as society thinks. The narrative advances mostly through personal interactions rather than actions taken. The characters do develop in this story because, in a sense, it is a coming of age narrative. Although they all go through a life changing event, their personal transformation is felt but not seen.
Buy it! This is not only an encouragement from someone who love Lemire’s writing, but an awe struck reader who can see the major influence of Lenox on the story. Beyond the narrative genius, the art is outstanding. It breathes new life into the narrative and shows the importance of its ability to inform and how it could either make or break a comic. The experience was filled with mystery and a need-to-see what is happening next. The colours are beautiful and light, which created a beautiful contrast with the story but also complemented it.