Rose #1-2
Written by Meredith Finch
Art by Ig Guara
Letters by Cardinal Rae
Colors by Triona Farrell
Published by Image Comics
Review by Hafsa Alkhudairi

Rose 1Rose is a magical fairy tale, where women that happen to manifest powers are recruited to protect the land and help it prosper. However, the land was ravaged by forces that want to keep the people subjugated. Enter Rose, a magical person who was able to survive despite her oppressors.

The comic is interesting conceptually, yet the narrative still adheres to some clichés; the protagonist and antagonist are both women. The difference is that the villain is multidimensional and is not villainous without a backstory and a convincing spiral towards evil. The protagonist is angry, sometimes in a rash manner, but mostly in a scared and calculated way, showing her as someone who uses her brain and not only her guile. Having a female protagonist and antagonist means that there are feminist themes that run throughout the comic but the focus is on the development of the characters and their story. The narrative is fast paced and exciting, enticing the reader into reading further and engagement.

The art in Rose is soft and descriptive consistently throughout the comic. The overall character design is consistent with classical fairy tale styles, other than the design of Drucilla who is the Queen and villain. Drucilla looks more edgy and hardcore showing a more appropriately stylistic choice for she represents the female warrior. While Rose is still developing her powers and understanding herself which meaning she still remains a maiden not a warrior within the story.

Though we see her progress with little items, we will hopefully be moving forward and see her becoming more warrior-like. The side character designs are also impactful. Some characters have scares, wrinkles, or make up that differentiates them from the rest of the characters, showing different levels of. My only critique would be how white washed the current issues are with only Woman of Colour being the villain, though the preview for next month holds a promise for more diverse cast and that gives me hope for the rest of the series.

Wait and see. Although I have many compliments for the series so far, I feel like the narrative is stunted in this format and may have worked better in a graphic novel style. Though that may because I enjoy the graphic novel format much more when it comes to such narratives that incite growth before the actual meat of the story can begin. Rose follows a clichéd narrative so far with a twist of a developed female villain and a mostly rational protagonist. She did just go through a tragic experience so I’ll give her some slack! The character designs are on point, giving every character their own style and characteristics that make every person compelling. Yet, I still wish for more diversity in the protagonist and antagonist camps. The story has so much room to grow so I am looking forward for the next issue to see how the creative team choose to develop the story.

Hafsa Alkhudairi
Hafsa Alkhudairi doing her MA Contemporary Literature and Culture at Birkbeck College, University of London, living in London, UK. She is graduating hopefully in october and has her heart set on going into publishing until she decides whether there is a PHD in her future. Current Project; Figuring out who is the big bad female villain in Marvel and DC.

Leave a Reply