Comic book reviews for Mae #4, Mae #5, and Mae #6 by Gene Ha and Paulina Ganucheau
Average rating: 2.6/5 stars
Mae #4 by Gene Ha
I can’t tell if Mae is a consistent or inconsistent book. Like, it’s a cute story, but it’s not making me shout from the hilltops of its excellence. But it has endearing moments where I wouldn’t dismiss it outright.
Perhaps it needs more structure. Perhaps the book is so much about Abbie winging everything that I can’t handle her approach, which is how the story flow feels, winging it. Which all fiction writing is winging it because you’re literally making it up. And now this book is giving me an existential crisis of “what is writing?”
Maybe this is the same as how I felt about Bandette. Where the stakes were off, and there was too much whimsy, hand-wavey making it happen. Also I’m having a really hard time keeping track of the names of people and places.
Mae being a mad scientist is cute. But not going to last long with Abbie inciting violence because her boots get noticed. There’s still a ton of things that we don’t know about this universe and Abbie’s role in it. I do kind of want Mae and the Duchess’ son to fall in love.
Mae #5 by Gene Ha
All I’m saying is that Petra better be Abbie’s ex-girlfriend.
I agree 100% with Mae that Abbie needs to have a real plan. Especially since I believe they have one more issue in which to save her father. (Or at least get to an end of a first arc, which may be “Abbie agrees that they need a direction.”) I can’t tell whether or not this lack of a plan is bothering me as a structural issue for the writing or as someone who plans things. Maybe a little of both.
The world building got more confusing here. It makes sense that a giant empire would have factions who were fighting against each other. But it doesn’t make sense that Abbie wouldn’t know. How long has Abbie been away? There’s some basic questions that haven’t been addressed. (Maybe the time thing will be addressed with Petra. Like just a line talking about how Abbie has been a bad girlfriend for leaving for X amount of time.)
It is an interesting reveal that everyone used to live on Earth. But why would they want to get back there? What’s the point? I can understand empire expansion and the exploration aspect. But is there something else? And why is an old flip phone a relic, the same way a technological advanced TARDIS-rip off is?
I’m still confused about Kvido. Is he more animal like? (We see him chase off after a butterfly in the woods.) Is he in love with Mae? Is he closer or further away from a pet who just happens to also wear clothing when awake?
Mae #6 by Gene Ha
Art: Paulina Ganucheau
Finally, an issue with some backstory! Finally, an issue which ascribes some of Abbie’s motivations and past adventures! Finally, people (and demons) questioning just how Abbie’s so strong and powerful!
I also appreciated Ganucheau’s pencils here, which I felt gave Ha more time with the story. Ha’s art was all angles. Whereas, Ganucheau brings roundness and maybe a bit more wonder and definition to the world. Or at least, I feel that I can tell the villagers from the baddies.
Does being from Earth mean that Abbie has super strength?
Abbie’s fighting here seemed a lot smarter than previous comics. Which I liked that. And she had a reason to be in the town. More purpose.
I do find this an odd place to end for the trade. I suppose six issues is traditional, but might be a bit jarring for the reader.
Become a rock star by supporting me and this blog via my Patreon. Shine bright!