Emet comics releases another title from their company, Helena Rose. A title that automatically made me think of “Helena” by My Chemical Romance, a song/music video that fits quite well into the first issue for this story. Helena Rose is described as an intergalactic fairy tale, a fairy tale where our heroine decides to save herself. In this tale, there is a planet called Planet Flora, the sixth planet of the outermost solar system. The Rose family lives in the Floridian Ring, a place where the each citizen has a flower instead of a heart to sustain their bodies .
This choice does raise questions of how much readers are willing to suspend disbelief: Having a flower play the part of a vital organ is very beautifully poetic but it stretches the logic of my semi-biologic reasoning. For instance, how does this flower sustain life? As far as the panels indicate, the flowers are just floating inside these bodies for all to see. There are no connections to the body, and no vessels. I am only assuming that their body is actually full of nitrogen rich dirt for these flowers to lay their deep roots in. Do they create children by pollination? Are these Floridian ring the only ones with flowers as their vital organ? Since a heart is mentioned, it is assumed that they do know what a heart is? When they visit a planet that picks flowers for a bouquet, are they horrified at the genocide of their people?
On the other hand, this is a fairy tale in space, and once the reader has accepted that, there is no reason not to accept flower-hearts.
Helena, the young girl at the center of the story is not able to live without a bubble around her head for fear that she will suffer an allergy attack. Despite her disability, she grows up to be a headstrong and curious young girl who is able to convince her litter brother to go along with all of her adventures. As is to be expected of young children who are doing something they shouldn’t be doing, Helena gets into some trouble. That is when her family breaks the news to her: Helena is steadily dying. The bubble she wears is not to protect her from allergies, it’s to protect her from losing the rest of petals and dying. This gets her exploring and finding a possible key to her survival.
What makes Helena Rose outstanding is that it’s story of a young girl determining her own fate. Helena is fragile, but she is also strong and full of hope. The love of her family fuels her on. Anyone going through anything frightening will appreciate how Helena rises above it. Her mysterious illness has not contained her just yet. She still has the ability to explore and learn more and she will do just that. Plus Helena is just plain fun. I would even go as far as describing her as an intergalactic Pippi Longstocking or Huckleberry Finn: Precocious, headstrong, and oh so charming.
The art for the comic is so enjoyable. The watercolor style adds to the whole fairy tale element. The penciling and pastel colors reminds me of the art in Disney’s 101 Dalmations . The details are wonderful for experiencing all the complex emotions, personality, and thoughts of the characters. It simply is just so pretty!
I am definitely looking forward to next leg in the journey.
Catch the first issue online from Emet comics (www.emetcomics.com)and enjoy getting to know Helena.