Mirka Andolfo's Mercy #3 Review

by Nick Devonald on July 29, 2020

Writer: Mirka Andolfo
Artist: Mirka Andolfo
Colourist: Mirka Andolfo
Colour Assistants: Gianluca Papi & Francesca Carotenuto
Letters: Fabio Amelia

One of the strengths of this series has been the way that Mirka Andolfo has focused on telling the story rather than needlessly explaining everything which is going on, leaving the reader to be swept up in the excellent storytelling rather than getting bogged down trying to figure out what’s going on. With this third issue Andolfo continues not worrying whether or not the reader understands the mythology going on, but by this stage in the story slowly the pieces are coming together and while explanations might not be too forthcoming all the pieces are beginning to come together and paint a bigger picture.

It’s still not completely clear who or what Lady Hellaine is, or what her relationship to some of Woodsburgh’s inhabitants is, but none of that matters. There’s something about her alien nature, her lack of understanding of basic human concepts, which makes her a little vulnerable and makes the reader root for her, all the while it’s unclear where she falls in the more traditional values of good and evil, although evidence shows she’s clearly a monster of some kind. Of course it helps the reader sympathise for Lady Hellaine when the monster hunters introduced in the last issue don’t come across as heroic, rather they come across as particularly monstrous. Not that anything feels particularly clear cut in terms of morals within this story. Everything seems to be different shades of grey and nothing comes across as particularly black or white. Perhaps another strength of the story is the innocence from the little girl, Rory, which contrasts starkly with almost everyone else we’ve met so far. Even going as far as not batting an eye when she sees Lady Hellaine at her most monstrous, instead just accepting that’s who she is.

The skill involved in writing a story like this is impressive, but when you realise that Andolfo isn’t just writing this story, she’s also drawing it, it takes the respect for Andolfo’s talents and storytelling to a whole new level. And as if that wasn’t enough she’s also colouring it as well? Incredible. It also means the story being told is exactly the story she’s set out to tell, nothing has been lost in translation between the different creators, no-one has diluted the story from the original vision or given their own take on it. While it’s not unheard of for one creator to be responsible for an entire comic it’s rare, and never to the high standards which are being shown here. The art on display is absolutely gorgeous, and there’s a real beauty to the horror as well. One of the strengths of comics as a medium is there’s no limit to what can be drawn on the page bar the creators imagination. There are no TV budgets or practicalities to consider, if the artist can imagine it they can create it. The creatures, whatever they finally reveal themselves to be, are an incredible creation.

The pieces are slowly coming together to reveal the picture and the reader is beginning to get an idea of what’s going on in Mercy. Mirka Andolfo’s storytelling techniques feel fresh and exciting, and it’ll be interesting to see how this story develops and what the future holds for it. The art is extraordinary and a real strength of the comic.

Our Score:


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