“It’s Lord of the Rings meets Lumberjanes” is the lazy reviewers cliche that we’re going to use to describe Christine Larsen’s fantasy funny book Orcs. But this is more than just a shameless attempt to get a pull quote on the back of a future issue, it’s actually a pretty accurate summation, so bear with us!
Publisher: The Larsen Project
Writer: Christine Larsen
Artist: Christine Larsen
Price: £2.49 from ComiXology
Our rating: [star rating=”5″]
Inevitably when you get a bunch of orcs and elves in a fantasy world it will draw immediate comparisons to Tolkein’s epic and the treasure hunting band in this book feels very much like the dwarves from the Hobbit (except they’re orcs of course!) There’s banter and bickering galore, and the characters each have their own identity as well as a unique look and feel.
But unlike the rather serious and poe faced world of Middle Earth, what makes Orcs so enjoyable is the quirky and irreverent tone that Larsen has instilled in every page, which gives it a sense of genuine fun and so is much more in keeping with the aforementioned Lumberjanes.(Although if we were being completely accurate it is much more like Noelle Stevensons wonderful web comic Nimona – but that doesn’t allow us to aliterate!)
You could easily see it lining up on the Boom! roster as the dialogue fizzes along with jokes and banter galore between the bickering orcs. While the artwork feels like part newspaper strip, part quirky indie book (think Scott Pilgrim or Giant Days) and is filled with lots of expressive faces, tons of background detail and a great sense of energy on every page. (Not to mention the world’s scariest squirrels!)
Orcs #1 contains two stories, the first half sees them attempt to steal some treasure from the aforementioned angry squirrels. While the second half follows the adventures of Drod the one eyed pirate and a Homeric encounter with a siren. So forgive our lazy journalist shorthand and embrace the world of Orcs, it really does live up to that hype quote!