Oona tries really, really hard. Her people hid and locked themselves into Elfheim after Loki brought about Ragnarok, bringing an end to the nine realms as they knew them. Feeling the weight of being trapped as a young elf and missing her best friend Pikki who she was separated from during Ragnarok, she desires nothing more than to escape and explore the realms, as changed as they may now be. Try as she may, she has a devil on her shoulder tempting her to do whatever she can to get what she wants, even if it is breaking the rules… or far worse.
The After Realm is genuinely fun. The mythical worlds and fantastical elements of this story fit Oeming’s many talents like a well-worn glove. I was a little worried at first because of the correlation to, well, Marvel, but here’s why #StoriesMatter and why this story in particular does for me. It doesn’t matter who has already written a tale about a character, or a story, or a theme; there are so many ways to pull off a new take on well-explored material. You boldly embrace your sensibilities, you bring why you love something to the table, and, for the reader, they will find new enjoyment from what you bring to it, just like I found enjoyment here.
If this series becomes as bonkers as the last page promises, then I’m so going to continue enjoying this series.
Taki Soma’s colors are really lovely here, giving us a world that is both familiar in its elvish tapestries, but also bold when story elements brazenly interrupt the relative peace the elves live in.
If I haven’t made a strong enough argument for fans of fantasy to pick up this series, then let me make it abundantly clear: Pick up this series.
Creative Team: Michael Avon Oeming (writer, art), Taki Soma (colors), Shawn Lee (letters)
Publisher: Image Comics
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