WEBCOMIC WEDNESDAY REVIEW: The Only Living Boy

Author: David Gallaher
Artist: Steve Ellis
Colorist: Mike Paar
Letterers: April and Scott O. Brown
Webcomic Link: The Only Living Boy
Publisher: Bottled Lightning (Represented by Hill Nadell)

Summary: Erik Farrel is a twelve-year-old boy who has taken it upon himself to run away. However, Erik ends up running farther than he ever could have imagined, waking up in a strange fantasy world without any idea of who he really is or where he really came from. While in this otherworld, Erik encounters interesting allies and enemies. From Morgan, a merfolk-esque warrior, to Baalikar, a chimeric dragon who looms over this world that he himself cobbled together, and everything in between, this reality is filled with intriguing creatures. The one thing that it is not filled with, terrifyingly, is humans, as Erik appears to be the only one of his kind in this plane.

Story: The story for the first issue of The Only Living Boy relies heavily on exploration and exposition. Many pages are filled with just explaining what the world is, what is going on, who these characters are, where they came from and why. Personally, I prefer these sorts of stories to be explored slowly, for tidbits and clues to be dropped along the way instead of delivered via monologue. There is a saying that I love, and I cannot remember where I heard it (probably Twitter) that goes: “fantasy is your setting, not your story.” Luckily, towards the middle of the first issue, this story picks up drastically, and the concept of running away from one’s problems, and how Erik intends to stand up for himself, comes into focus, making for an interesting read.

Art: The Only Living Boy’s art is fantastic for any comic, but especially for a web comic. It would not be disappointed to pay four dollars for an issue of it off of the rack at a local comic book store. The characters are light, and cartoonish, without sacrificing realistic poses and details. The colors are bright and fit the tone perfectly. The big moments are big. The personal moments are personal. And the words read nicely and naturally.

 

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Conclusion:  The target audience seems a bit young, but not so much that I would imagine older readers couldn’t enjoy it. Refreshingly, the website for The Only Living Boy is incredibly easy to navigate, visually appealing, and provides detailed information on the creators. I would recommend The Only Living Boy to anyone who enjoys fantasy, no question, and in fact, I already have a few people in mind that I’m about to message.

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