REVIEW: ‘Snow Angels,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Snow Angels #1

Snow Angels #1 is a ComiXology Original, written by Jeff Lemire, with art and colors by Jock and lettering by Steve Wands. Within an icy wasteland lies The Trench, a vast channel carved into the surface of the planet. Within it live The Trenchfolk, a settlement of people who survive in this hostile environment by following The Three Testaments of The Trench: you must never leave the trench, the trench provides, and the trench is endless. Mae and Milliken were born here and will live their entire lives in The Trench. It’s all they’ve ever known and will be all that they ever know.

When Milli turns twelve, their father takes the two girls on an overnight skate down The Trench to teach Milli how to hunt and survive—a coming-of-age ritual. It’s a trip of a lifetime, but something’s amiss when they return to their village. Did they travel too far and awaken something inhuman?

While the entire plot is excellently set up, the premise of the plot isn’t entirely novel. There have been plenty of sci-fi, apocalyptic media that have used the premise of some boundary to which a group of people is confined. Whether that be a bunker, the borders of a village, or mysterious walls, going beyond these boundaries results in some bad events, and the inhabitants are often advised against such acts. And Snow Angels is shaping up to be no different.

The icy landscape and harsh environment remind me a bit of Metro Exodus. The leftover technology from beings who came before the Trenchfolk, who resort to calling it magic, gives me Horizon Zero Dawn vibes. But despite the familiar setup, the promise for more exploration about the background behind the creation of The Trench and why humans have fallen so far is going to keep this reviewer reading. And just who is this mysterious Snowman? I’m excited to find out.

While the plot isn’t original (yet), the comic differentiates itself with the characters and the excellent art. This first issue is a good introduction to Milli, Mae, and their father. The two girls are vastly different in both appearance and personality. The girls taunt each other like real siblings, and even though their father is often caught between the bickering, he’s fair, and you can tell he deeply loves his kids. Beyond the squabbling, there is nothing to dislike about these three, and I expect they’ll be wonderful characters to follow throughout this series.

Jock’s art brings this cruel wasteland to life. The art is grungy, emulating the harsh environment well. The characters live in a black and white world with muted shades of blues and greens. The Trench is made of snow and ice, so the limited palette makes sense, but it’s a great choice because the deep shadows pop against the white background. The introduction of red catches your eye and highlights the harshness of the world and the drastic change these characters are about to go through.

While the plot doesn’t instantly strike me as unique, the ending of Snow Angels #1 brings plenty of promise. The art perfectly reflects the cruel, icy wasteland. This first issue is a good start, and I’m excited to see where this series takes us.

Snow Angels #1 is available now as part of the ComiXology Originals line of exclusive digital content only available on ComiXology and Kindle.

Snow Angels #1
3.5

TL;DR

While the plot doesn’t instantly strike me as unique, the ending of Snow Angels #1 brings plenty of promise. The art perfectly reflects the cruel, icy wasteland. This first issue is a good start, and I’m excited to see where this series takes us.