Review: ‘Mawrth Valliis’ Sets A Pace

by Benjamin Hall


Two factions fight on Mars. What mystery will reveal itself due to their skirmish?


Writer/artist EPHK creates a fast pace for this original story. However, it is arguably too fast due to how only sound effects and some plot points slow it down. Though no one can argue that there is any problem with the sequencing of the narrative. In fact the main reason this story is so fast is cause of how clearly EPHK conveys it. From the cover art to the summary on the back there is clarity and simplicity. The other reason the pacing is so fast is that most of the issue feels like a part of the series Æon Flux (1991-1995). This is due to how it is mainly a nonverbal, action chase scene that has an interpretive telling.

Mawrth Valliis (2021) cover by EPHK

When it comes to the visuals one can also see visuals references to Æon Flux, specifically the characters’s outfits. Also the hair style of two characters is somewhat reminiscent to Alieen’s  (actress Beth Broderick) human disguise in Men In Black: The Series season 1, episode 8 ‘The Inanimate Syndrome’ (1997). Yet, the color choices are literally the opposite to Æon Flux. Where Æon Flux uses purples and blacks EPHK uses whites and yellows. Despite the obvious inspirations from two shows existing there is enough originality to EPHK’s style to not call it plagiaristic. This is mostly due to how the line work is less angular than in Æon Flux.

Mawrth Valliis (2021) page 10 art by EPHK

The cover is a good example of the quality of the interior visuals. Yet, the cover does not give a clear idea of the range of colors that are on display. What it does display is one character design and a unique font for the logo. This logo is just about the perfect size for this cover due to how it competes with, yet does not overwhelm, the art. It even assists with the sense of depth for the overall design. In conclusion the cover is as engaging as the narrative.

Mawrth Valliis (2021) is out now from Image Comics.

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