It’s time for another review!
This week, I’m reviewing Moon’s Ostrich #1, with all writing and art done by Jerome Walford. There’s no editor listed.
As always, we’re on the Prince song system: Adore means buy it, Beautiful Strange means take it or leave it, and When Doves Cry means don’t buy it.
So, this purports to be a children’s book. A child of about 10, who’s a mechanical prodigy, slips into the “Ministry of Power” to get a secret weapon: a mechanical ostrich. She then runs away from a large, steam-powered spider while inside the ostrich, gets shot at by the spider, and then escapes with the ostrich out a hatch, proclaiming victory and defeating the Ministry of Power.
It’s 11 pages of nonsense once you reach the end.
At no point in time does the child’s name ever come up. Ever.
The writing isn’t bad, but it isn’t good. There are captions that are conversational. The child (I refuse to name a character if the creator didn’t do it) seems to be having a conversation with someone else in the captions. However, because of the tone of the conversation, the actions that we’re watching are taking place in the past, because the conversation is taking place in the present. Basically, the child is telling the story to someone else.
The problem with that is twofold: first, if they’re talking, there should be quotation marks around the captioned dialogue to show these people are talking in a different location/time; the second is that we never see who the other person is. Who is this little girl talking to in the captions? We never find out.
Even though this says it’s a children’s story, it isn’t for kids. Well, it isn’t just for kids. Definitely all-ages, but it skews older due to the vocabulary used. Just because you have a kid and a mechanical ostrich in the story doesn’t mean it’s for kids.
The art is gorgeous. It’s absolutely the best part about the book. It’s honestly a joy to look at, and it tells the story pretty well. There were a couple of things that made me scratch my head (which is why the story is told “pretty” well instead of “very” well), but then things almost made sense in the end. (Writing problem, not an art problem—which is compounded since the writer is also the artist, or vice versa.)
The lettering has a couple of problems, one of which is huge.
The first problem is the crossbar I’s. It’s a pretty simple “rule” that is easy to fix, but that Jerome didn’t bother to follow/learn.
The next problem, and it’s a big one, is the color selection of the captions. Simply put, they’re too close together in color, making it seem like it’s the same person talking in the captions, despite what’s being said. It’s only on closer inspection that the difference in the hues can be told.
A competent editor could have fixed these problems, pulling a coherent story out of it at the very end. A couple of simple fixes, and this would have been worthwhile.
Final Verdict: When Doves Cr