I picked up Orc Girl for a few reasons: it’s a black and white, independent comic written by Paul Allor and priced at $3 for the print or $1 for the PDF! I love black and white comics and grew up on the Mirage Turtles (really? news to me!). I just finished reading Punk Rock Jesus (and loved it) and I was looking for something else to read. I had heard a lot of good things about Orc Girl and decided to give it a shot. Man, did it over deliver!
Artist: Thomas Boatwright
Publisher: Challenger Comics
Age: All Ages
Orc Girl by Paul Allor with art by Thomas Boatwright is the story of Fern and Bogar, which provides a bittersweet look at the beauty of life and the pain of loss. They go out on an adventure because Fern wants to see the world. They get separated and her brother Bogar is taken by the humans, leaving Fern to go back to her people. I really enjoy all the twists which have become a staple of Allor’s writing style.
While I originally bought it for Paul Allor’s writing, I was blown away by Thomas Boatwright’s art. I absolutely love energetic, black and white art, and a lot of times, the art can really hamper a story for me. Orc Girl, on the other hand, is elevated by this art style. Allor’s writing is great but the Allor/Boatwright team is amazing! And I was pumped to find out that one of the accompanying stories was also done by that team.
The Orc Girl one-shot includes the following short stories all written by Paul Allor. I enjoyed them almost as much as Orc Girl itself:
- Another Life with art by Ben Dewey.
- Cage Around My Heart with art by Jesse Hamm.
- The Last Flight of Zeppelin 223 with art by Koong Koong.
- Dead Man with art by Thomas Boatwright.
Dead Man is the short story that stood out for me, partly because of Boatwright’s art, but Allor’s story really interested me once again. It included twists that will both kept the reader guessing what will happen next and surprise them when those guesses are wrong! Typically I find short stories like this lacking and prefer longer, 4-5 book story arcs, but Allor has a knack at sucking the reading into his world quickly and keep them there the entire time using few pages. After reading Dead Man, I was left wanting more, but was satisfied with what I had read. It was not a feeling of “Oh, only 5 pages! What a rip-off!” and more a feeling of “I could read that again and again!”
You can get the all of the above stories collected in a printed book for only $3 or as a PDF for only $1! How can you not pick this up? Head over to Challenger Comics to get this and other great creator-owned comics. If you like Paul Allor’s stuff, you should read the interview we did last month with him. And if you want to know what they will be working on next, you should follow Paul Allor (@PaulAllor) and Thomas Boatwright (@T_Boatwright) on Twitter.