Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Comic Review: Hollow Fields

Seven Seas, 2009, $14.99

I got this book a long time ago, so I don’t really know what drew me to it, but I would assume the cute cover with the great colors.  This one is manga, I think. It follows the right to left pattern and everything. I often don’t like manga. For example, I started reading Nana and couldn’t even get far enough in to meet the second Nana. That one may have been particularly brutal, though. Brutal = ridiculously girly.
Fan art of Stinch
Hollow Fields is about a school for budding evil mad scientists – kids about 9 or 10 years old. Like a grade school or something. A normal kid accidentally gets lost and wanders into the mad scientist school without realizing. With a little help from her one friend and a little luck, she makes it through by the skin of her overly sweet teeth. In the end notes, the creator points out that she made the main popular mean girl blonde because she originally had black hair and there were too many people with dark hair. So she says instead of blonde, she has lavender hair so she doesn't fall into the blonde mean girl cliche. In the black and white art… That made me laugh. J

The story was also cutesy, maybe more cutsey than the art even. When I read it consistantly, I liked it. I put it down in the middle for almost a year, but when I picked it back up, I got right back into it.  Sometimes, it was too childish. The headmistress was forcefully sneaky, saying things like "That thing I don’t talk about" and the "secret to hollow fields" over and over even though she was in a secluded room with the person she worked on "the secret" with. The evil was also very cliché. Really, there was just lots of cliché. But with the cliché was a lot of interesting story idea that kept me enjoying it and let me get past all the cliché.

Most of the characters are girls. They are powerful and smart. The only two main fellas have their strengths – they are very smart – but that is about it. They are whiny and have a very hard time accomplishing their goals because their hands are tied by rules and bad luck.

I thought the character design was great, and as much as I often don’t enjoy manga stories, I do often like the style. It was very cutesy, but in an adorable way. Okay, sometimes it was too much. But this is a story about 9 year old or so so cutesy is appropriate.

The layouts were sometimes hard to follow. But again, this might have been a translation thing from having to switch to the right-to-left organization. I have read other manga, like Vampire Hunter D, but not enough to be used to it yet.

I bet a 10 or 11 year old girl would like this a lot. The four most main characters are all girls. While I was reading it, I was sucked in, but that’s not saying much because I had the same reaction to Twilight. Maybe that is just my reaction to guilty pleasures. If I think about it, I could take it or leave it, but while I am reading it I can’t put it down.

P.S. I did my sketches for INKtober last night, but I haven't scanned them yet. I will post them tomorrow.

No comments:

Post a Comment