Review - Maw #1Comic Reviews 

Review – Maw #1

Review - Maw #1

Review – Maw #1

Warning: Contains references to the crime of rape. If you are affected by either this review or the comic please contact Rape Crisis Scotland on 08088 01 03 02 for support

Writer: Jude Ellison S. Doyle

Artist: A.L. Kaplan

Publisher: Boom! Studios

Release Date: September 15, 2021

Issue #1

What happens when one woman becomes the real monster society has always made her out to be? Dragged by her sister Wendy to a feminist retreat on the remote island of Angitia, Marion Angela Weber hopes to gain some perspective and empowerment… that isn’t at the bottom of a bottle. But everything is horribly derailed after an assault on their first night there. The violent encounter awakens something in Marion she never imagined, triggering warped mutations in her body, and awakening a hunger she can’t bring herself to name. When the townsfolk react with suspicion and violence, what unforgivable act will transform Marion into the very monster they’ve made her out to be? A provocative five-issue horror series by award-winning journalist and opinion writer Jude Ellison S. Doyle (Dead Blondes and Bad Mothers: Monstrosity, Patriarchy, and the Fear of Female Power) and artist A.L. Kaplan (Full Spectrum Therapy) that explores the anger of women trapped by society’s expectations and the reclamation of power through collective rage, perfect for readers of Redlands and Something is Killing the Children.

Writer: Jude Ellison S. Doyle

Marion Weber is dragged by her sister to the secluded Island community of Angitia to join a feminist commune. Marion is recovering from a horrific sexual and physical attack that is taking its toll on her.

At the retreat, she’s disappointed to find it exactly what she thought a 60s hippy style commune and in disgust leaves to enjoy the local bars. It’s there she’s slipped a laced drink and awakens hours later with only partial memories and the horrible feeling that some cold and wet is within her.

She flashes back to her original trauma where the victim was put on trial as much as the perpetrators and she manages to persuade her sister to not call the police.

Doyle uses the issue as a slow build-up to something horrifying, Marion amnesia will I assume by covered by a flashback in the next issue and the depictions of how rape victims are treated both in the media as well as the the courtroom should embarrass any man or woman who blames the victim. The idea that she somehow is encouraging or inciting the abhorrent behaviour of the men is a familiar plot (see The Accused) and the idea that consent can be removed at any point should be central within any relationship or encounter.

Artist: A.L. Kaplan

Kaplan’s artwork employs various panel devices to increase tension within the issue such as the aspect to aspect transitional pieces within larger panels adds foreshadowing and malevolent tension. Like flashes of memory, the reader needs to quickly backtrack through the issue to locate and understand its significance. It seems to mirror many victims patchy memory, with the mind blocking out the worst until it floods back with blood chilling horror.

Overall Thoughts

Creating a protagonist like Marion is an interesting choice. She is negative and dismissive of the support and assistance her sister gives her. It would have been easy for Doyle to create a likeable character to help the audience embrace the character. By making Marion slightly annoying she is challenging your thoughts about victims and how society sees women who do not conform to societal norms.

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Michael Lennox

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T'was a cold dark night in East Kilbride... and below the roundabouts, something old and ancient began to shudder awake. The world would rue the day that it gave the Green Jaguar comics to read!

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