1st Impressions: LOLA XOXO # 1

Written by  Siya Oum
Art by Siya Oum
Aspen Comics

                Lola was a little girl. Her parents  took her to LAX in Los Angeles, sending her to her grandmother’s in New York City.  Yet, after a few hours, Lola’s plane is forced to make an emergency landing in Ohio because out of nowhere, Los Angeles and New York City both blow up in a blaze.  Lola meets Conrad in Ohio as she tries to call her parents.
                Fast forward several years as Lola has now grown up. And after many broken promises from Conrad, Lola decides to go search for her parents … in a post apocalyptic New York City.


                Let me just say this  . .. this book is GORGEOUS. It is well penciled. There is plenty of detail. The people and proportions vary. The backgrounds are vast and detailed. The water colors used on the pencils making Oum’s work look better than ever. This book’s art simply grips you from the moment you open it.
                Oum makes great use of panels to give the book a great feel of how epic this story will be. The colors used create beautiful and haunting atmosphere from start to finish in the book. The post apocalyptic world is full of a grainy-ness that feels authentic. And the overall designs of the characters are appealing and help set the mood. Honestly, one of the most beautiful books I have ever seen.


                Oum opens the book with our lead and make sure she is relatable from the word go.  Lola really connects with her child like fears to her fears of loneliness to her wanting to grow up and venture the world. Oum presents us a strong lead heroine who can still be vulnerable.  Oum gives an interesting supporting cast starting to develop around her. I say starting cause Oum does two very important things this issue: give us enough attention on our lead to want to follow her and world build. We got our starting point and Oum leaves plenty of mystery.
                The pacing of the book works for its opening issue. It has just enough to let us know what is going on, introduce and let us care about the main character, start the main plot and get us on our way. Oum’s dialogue is on point, feeling authentic. The sense of mystery and scope of what has happened to the world is definitely a plot point alongside the main plot itself. Oum presents us with a well-written, intriguing first issue that shoots off right off the gate.


                The book looks beautiful and reads well. There is a sophistication to its story and art that make it stand out.  Aspen has a hit with this book.


                Lola XOXO # 1 gets a 10 … out of 10. One of the best first issues I have ever read. Pick it up April 9th, 2014.