“Isn’t making art just proudly showing your scars to the world?”… asks the first panel of the first issue of Iolanda Zanfardino’s new comic ‘Hecate’s Will’. So the story starts off with an existential question for artists, making the reader feel like maybe the tale is going to be morose, but Iolanda makes the mood swing in the next few pages. And so we dive into Hecate’s world – a queer artist who plans on giving up art, but not before doing a series of last graffiti pieces around Manhattan.
The color palette is mono-chromatic, but instead of going for the usual grayscale, Iolanda goes for coral tones, reminiscent of the bright-peachy panels of her comic-series ‘Alice in Leatherland’. The artwork is itself is quite sleek and I love how Iolanda makes a stark differentiation between the regular panels and the ones with Hecate’s ‘guerilla art’. The two are distinctly different and help the art pieces within the comic stand out.
The first issue does a good job of setting up the protagonist’s character, we know she goes by the name Hecate, but it’s indicated that her real name is perhaps Rebecca and that maybe her family isn’t accepting of her street-artist lifestyle. There are probably issues/themes that might be tackled over the next few issues. A few other characters are also introduced in this one, like Mateo, her best-friend/flatmate, a cheery theater enthusiast. So there’s a whole sub-plot about Hecate helping Mateo out with his next play, that happens to be a tribute to playwright Jonathan Larson (yes, the guy Andrew Garfield played in the film ‘Tick, Tick… Boom!’).
Overall, this was a fun introductory issue, with some interesting diverse characters and an intriguing plot. Hecate is clearly someone who derives joy out of creating art, she also has a talent for designing clothes, so it makes you wonder why she wants to give it all up. Pick this issue up if you want to read a comic that’s all about art and some solid LGBTQ+ representation.
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