“Her name was Eve and she loved the trees…”
Before the time of Backwood Folk, there was Eve of the Ozarks and her pioneer paw. Eve is an adventurous little wild child who can speak to the animals and trees of the Ozarks, while others don’t have her unique abilities. The ‘Ozarks’ by the way is the name of the mountain range and surrounding terrain that covers much of the southern half of Missouri and an extensive portion of northwestern and north central Arkansas. That’s where creator Gustav Carlson was raised, so it makes sense for him to write what he knows. Eve’s adventures take place back when the countryside was free of cities and people, and strange critters roamed free; a simpler time.
In this introductory issue, Guardian of the Bluffs, Eve wants to go exploring the Bluffs against her paw’s wishes. There’s a dangerous and ancient being that lurks there, but to Eve that’s no reason to make different plans on the account of some one antlered demon elk. With her companion Hieronymus, a powerful cantankerous old goat, they venture forth to the Bluffs to see if they can reason with the one antlered elk the rest of the woods are afraid of.
While Backwood Folk focuses on pink-eyed monsters, relationships with old friends, and mysterious figures haunting the woods of Po’Dunk, Eve is more of a young adult title. It’s one of those comics you can enjoy with your child while also feeling like one upon reading it. Carlson is a smart man for catering to two different demographics while at the same time telling the stories he wants to tell focusing on the fascinating area he grew up in.
Carlson’s art in Eve is simply beautiful, with a raw-yet-bold look and feel. His style reminds me of Jeff Lemire, Barry Windsor-Smith, and Jeff Smith rolled into one with the coloring of Jose Villarrubia. There’s lots of love in the artwork, and also lots of detail. No space goes to waste, for Carlson makes sure you get the most bang for your buck with this first issue.
For 99 cents at ComiXology, Eve of the Ozarks would be a great purchase for your collection and a good story to share with your friends. It’s new, fun and different; isn’t that what we’re always looking for in a good comic? Keep an eye on Gustav Carlson while you’re at it, for I have a feeling that this guy is going places.
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