If you were intrigued by the first issue of ‘Hecate’s Will’ by Iolanda Zanfardino, you’ll love how #2 starts – with the protagonist completely owning her sexuality in the first few panels. Hecate walks through streets, head held high, the back of her jacket screaming ‘Dyke’ in bold, reclaiming the term with pride. When a bunch of old women whisper in disapproval at her, she pokes her tongue out to them (not as a child would) and moves on. I like her.
Quick recap – Hecate is a street artist who plans on giving up art, but not before doing a final ambitiously cryptic graffiti series. The first few of them get people buzzing in the city and social media. Meanwhile, she also volunteers to help best-friend Mateo with a play. That’s where Hecate crosses path with a lot of interesting people, including the gorgeous Naomi, someone she can’t stand. A potential enemies-to-lovers plot brews…
Issue #2 continues to set the story up, we get introduced to a charming cancer-survivor Amber, who runs a fancy boutique that caters to ‘ridiculously rich customers’. She utters the world-wise quote – “isn’t art just proudly showing your scars to the world?” to Hecate. It happens to be the same quote the comic series begins with. And the author poignantly illustrates over the next few panels how different people looks at their scars. While for some they are badges of honor, marks of a life well-lived, for some others they are a source of shame, something to cover-up. Along with the theme of body acceptance, the author also touches upon the themes of poverty, death & family alienation. We get a brief flashback of Hecate’s childhood to get some understanding of her fraught relationship with her father. (I just hope the author won’t be cramming in too many issues into the plot.)
Since this leg of the story unfolds during winter, there are some gorgeous snow-filled panels. Iolanda continues with a peachy-palette for the color scheme and the white snow flakes against those tones looks alive. There are 3-4 pages set in the outdoors when it’s snowing, and those panels really stand out, doesn’t matter what month you are reading the comic in, it makes you feel like December is knocking on your door.
The possibility of romance between Hecate and Naomi is further strengthened in the comic, so those hoping to see sparks fly between the two will be satisfied. As far as where Hecate’s final plan is going, it remains a mystery. So readers will have to wait for the next few issues to get something concrete.
It’s a 4/5 from me.
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