Creator: Sas Milledge / Boom! Studios
The very moment you open Mamo #1, you are greeted by an absolutely stunning shot of a coastal village and a girl on her bike. There is a look of determination on her face as the clouds billow in the background and you can almost feel the wind that is sweeping the land.
Mamo‘s premise is simple: Jo is seeking out the Witch of Haresden and instead finds the Witch’s granddaughter, Orla. While at first, we don’t know the exact nature of witches in the lore, the story quickly interjects a couple of fantasy elements that indicate we are very much in a magical realist world. Furthermore, we get to tag alongside Jo and Orla on their journey to navigate it.
Sas Milledge does such an absolutely stellar job at creating a first issue. She lets her whimsical artwork speak for itself, the dialog is salient and to the point. The conversations between Jo and Orla feel entirely natural. Any exposition that occurs is succinct and efficient. We are given ample opportunity to exist within the world. The panels are welcoming and make it easy to appreciate fine details and revel in the quiet moments. Milledge lets Mamo #1’s pages be silent and judiciously places the speech bubbles to lead the reader through the story.
The pastel-esque coloring that permeates most of the issue is welcoming and makes the moment where the darker sides of magic pop up that much more mysterious and alluring. The way that the magical creatures move through the space is ethereal, and the way that Orla curtly explains the mechanics of magic to a novice Jo is endearing. It’s a clever construction that leaves the series wide open for a bunch of possibilities and I’m excited to see more of this disarmingly enchanting world.
While Mamo #1 is very much a staging ground, it is a beautiful one. One that is a perfect introductory comic for younger readers and a nice little jaunt through the magic of childhood for older ones. I’m truly excited to see what Milledge has in store for all parties involved and I can’t wait to see how she continues to bring that magic to life.
9.0 “Faery Rings” out of 10