Niobe: She is Life #1, #2, #3, and #4 Comic Book Reviews

Comic book reviews for Niobe: She is Life #1, Niobe: She is Life #2, Niobe: She is Life #3, and Niobe: She is Life #4 by Amandla Stenberg, Sebastian A. Jones, and Ashley A. Woods
Average rating: 2.75/5 stars

Niobe: She is Life #1 Niobe: She is Life #2 Niobe: She is Life #3 Niobe: She is Life #4

Erica gives this comic three starsNiobe: She is Life #1 by Amandla Stenberg and Sebastian A. Jones
Art: Ashley A. Woods

I’m not sure what I think of Niobe’s world and this book. The story reminds me a bit of Morgan le Fay’s stories. It felt rather Celtic in nature. And I never know what to make of people going to hell and traveling through it.

There are still huge questions about Niobe’s father and exactly why she is on the run. I suppose that her reasons will help play into the long-term focus of this book.

I was a little shocked that Essessa is a vampire. Likewise, I found it odd that her story was so embellished in the back cover prose of the comic. Isn’t Niobe the main character? Shouldn’t we learn more about her life and her world?

I also wasn’t sure what to make of Bragar Steelnose and all the men he’s with. It seemed obvious and yet skipped over that the reason Niobe didn’t fit in was because she’s a woman. Even if apparently, she’s very skilled at rock climbing and taming beasts that normally gore people. Of course, they blame her for distracting them with her powers while their brother is killed.

Woods’ character designs are interesting. However, I’m not sure if I like this style of computer-generated art. The overarching narrative voice, which we don’t really know who’s saying that, has odd typography that doesn’t seem to flow with the page very well. It could be the typography strokes.

Erica gives this comic three starsNiobe: She is Life #2 by Amandla Stenberg and Sebastian A. Jones
Art: Ashley A. Woods

The typography was so much better in this issue. So much more readable. Seemed like issue #1 was trying to reinvent typography, and I’m all for creativity, but you don’t have to go reinvent the readable wheel.

I’m glad that we figured out the mysterious voice was Charan, a scribe and another elf. It was nice to not have to wade through more time here. I did love what the scribe said to Niobe about how she is able to save Sin, and Charan only saved Niobe because it wasn’t her time and no one else was around to stop her death.

One big failing in this book is its reliance on fantasy tropes. While it certainly seems to be trying to undo some of their stereotypes (usually around race and gender), I honestly don’t read enough fantasy, nor do I play D&D, so I feel like I miss the context. The explainer in the “last time on Niobe” part helped clear up things I wasn’t getting from that lack of fantasy trope knowledge.

I do hope Sin and Niobe continue to go on a shared adventure. The rest of the characters I’m not too fond of. Of course, they are also largely not fleshed out.

Erica gives this comic three starsNiobe: She is Life #3 by Amandla Stenberg and Sebastian A. Jones
Art: Ashley A. Woods

The more I read of this book, the more I question if comics is the best place to tell this story. The reliance on fantasy tropes also continues to make me miss “obvious” elements of the story.

While I didn’t call for full romance between Sin/Joica and Niobe, I’m not opposed to it. Even if I thought this would be a story about a woman coming to her own. I suppose it is what it is. And Joica is sweet enough.

So they both need to kill their fathers? Seems like Joica’s father is coming down on them sooner rather than later, and he either captured Niobe’s mother or the goddess voice that follows her around.

Erica gives this comic two starsNiobe: She is Life #4 by Amandla Stenberg and Sebastian A. Jones
Art: Ashley A. Woods

The book ends on the same problem. Of course, I also discovered, when seeing how many issues this run lasted, that Niobe is in several other miniseries written by Jones. I don’t think I will be picking those up at all.

The plot again felt very D&D from the aspect of random things keep happening in the universe. The first issue, I thought she was going to be on the run from Essessa. There’s no Essessa in the other three issues.

Then I thought maybe she’d learn a lesson about fighting with the boys. A little bit of that happened. But mostly her lesson was that life is shitty and unfair and her true love Joica may die. He also has an evil father who comes after him and battles with Niobe and the others.

Speaking of others, turns out that Bragar has been secretly training Niobe’s sisters. What?! Random. So very random. At least they are given names as they are cut down by the orcs, and another cries for her sister.

Yeah, these books, these books are not for me.

Related Posts with Thumbnails

About Erica

Erica McGillivray is the showrunner of 6’7″ & Green. I love comic books and enjoy taking a critical and a fun eye to them. If you’re interested in knowing more about me, check out my main site or my Twitter account.

This entry was posted in Stranger Comics: Niobe: She is Life and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *