One Punch Reviews #9: Roza
For today’s One Punch Review, let’s take a look at something relatively kid friendly. Parents should first sit their kids down, though, and tell them that picking their scabs and opening their wounds won’t give them the power to summon butterflies. It sounds silly, I know. I respect the intelligence of children. Back in the day, though, when kids were crawling around smelly poop-infested sewers to be like a Ninja Turtle, I realized that you just cannot underestimate the power of a child’s imagination.
After you’ve had that talk, though, go ahead and lead them to Kelly Hamilton’s lush fantasy webcomic, Roza.
Remember the style that the Walt Disney Studios and Don Bluth used to illustrate, back before every major film studio decided that cel-shaded animation was obsolete? Back when the artwork blended modern innovations like rotoscoping with rounded, old-school character designs that haven’t changed all that much since the days of Cinderella and Pinnochio? Roza lives in that world. When reading the webcomic, I get the distinct feeling that it might be based on an animated film from the 60’s. There’s one relatively dark twist that Uncle Walt probably would have frowned upon: the heroine, Roza, is cursed with a power that makes her blood a conduit for magic. So, as you can imagine, from time to time Roza looks like she’s barely escaped an especially serious kitchen accident.
Roza is a headstrong girl who takes on feats of derring-do to find a way to get rid of her curse. She’s the blue-collar alternative to the Disney Princesses — the tough, soccer playing sports girl to Jasmine’s high-society clique girl. Roza is accompanied by her faithful companion, a charming bug-eyed rat named Nic. Nic doesn’t look very smart, but he’s very loyal, very helpful, and gosh-darned cute. In the first story, entitled “Roza and the Horse Prince”, Roza must rescue a prince who is currently in the form of a white horse. Roza has to deal both with the Prince’s stubbornness and the cruel indignities of the dungeon. When she’s done, though, it’s time to move on to the next exciting adventure (“Roza and the Brigand Mage”)!
Thus far, Rosa feels like a children’s storybook, like Alice in Wonderland or the Wizard of Oz. Each adventure is self-contained, to my blessed relief. Intricately-woven storylines have benefits, but they don’t quite convey a sense of accomplishment like a series of smaller adventures.
Roza is an uncomplicated webcomic. It moseys along at a relaxed pace. It’s filled with vivid illustrations that create a world full of fantasy and wonder. Roza should delight both children and adults… though I suspect nostalgic adults may get a bigger kick out of it. Still, how many webcomics can you say come with their own paperdolls? Ms. Hamilton only provides a couple of outfits available in Roza’s official wardrobe. However, more clothes should be available through the use of crayons, a sheet of paper, and a child’s imagination.
Rating: 4 (out of 5 stars)
Posted on April 23, 2008, in 4 Stars, adventure webcomic, all ages webcomic, fantasy webcomic, One Punch Reviews, The Webcomic Overlook, Uncategorized, webcomics and tagged Roza. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.