Review – ‘Nimona’ by Noelle Stevenson

In the summer, when she was our social media intern, Caitlin Mitchell, reviewed Persepolis. In her new role as our Digital Marketing volunteer Caitlin will be reviewing some more comics for us. Here is the first, Nimona by Noelle Stevenson:

As a relatively new entrant to the world of comics, I had no idea where to start and what to read, but Nimona was suggested to me by Damon (having not yet read it himself, this was quite a risky move) [although I’d only heard good things about it – Damon]. However it paid off as I was gifted with a humorous yet touching tale of adventure and conspiracy. The book follows Lord Ballister Blackheart, renowned ‘supervillain’ – I use inverted commas as we learn that the roles of good and evil in this story are not as they first appear – and his sidekick Nimona, a young, impulsive shapeshifter, as they attempt to expose the shady antics of the Institution of Law Enforcement and Heroics.

Nimona by Noelle Stevenson

Led by Blackheart’s nemesis Sir Ambrosius Goldenloin, the Institution are after the pair, and their plotting leads to much havoc and many near misses before a final battle in the climax of the book. There are many factors that make Nimona a great read; I love the art style, which starts off simple but becomes more detailed and assured as the book goes on. I grew attached to the characters – to Blackheart, who, almost comically due to his supervillain reputation, seems to be the only character who cares about saving human lives, and who turns out to have a much deeper relationship with Goldenloin than we first realise. To Nimona, who is incredibly impulsive and fiercely loyal to her partner in crime, and whose shapeshifting power lends an air of magic to the story.

Nimona by Noelle Stevenson

The book takes a darker turn in the latter few chapters as the true depth of Nimona’s power is revealed, yet Stevenson still manages to create laughter and uses dry humour very well throughout, making it an easy read! I think that the book also puts an almost apocalyptic twist on many aspects of today’s society; the need for a common enemy to unite people, even if the designated enemy is not to blame; the gap between different social classes, symbolised by the Institution’s disregard for civilian life; and the ongoing battle between science and faith, explored through scientist Blackheart’s need for an explanation of Nimona’s shapeshifting abilities. Nimona is a tale of loyalty, adventure, magic, science and deadpan humour, and I would definitely recommend that you give it a go!

– Caitlin

Caitlin’s Intern Web Comic Episode 5 (and a wee cheerio!)

Here is the final instalment of our collaborative web comic, produced by the incredibly talented Rebecca Horner!

caitlin05 resized

Well, that’s my two week internship here at DCCS over! The time has flown by and it’s been an amazing experience. Over the past two weeks I’ve been introduced to the world of comics and in particular the busy world of Dundee Comics Creative Space. Thank you to everyone who has allowed me the chance to interview you, and especially thanks to the DCCS team and artists for never saying no to a photo shoot! I’ve worked with Rebecca Horner, an amazing artist, to produce this collaborative web comic detailing my time here – thanks Rebecca for never complaining about my lack of artistic input! I’ve also had the chance to sit in on some of the workshops that go on here at the Space – both the after school Comics Clubs with young people, and the workshops that are happening in partnership with a group from Advocating Together; the finished product of this project will be a comic about tackling disability hate crime, and I can’t wait to see it! No two workshops are ever the same and I’ve had the chance to see just how incredibly creative the Comics Clubbers are, and to enjoy some classic cheese jokes (what’s the best cheese to hide a small horse with? Mascarpone!). I’ve learnt some valuable life lessons from Damon – mainly to always always keep note of your passwords, and that a Snickers a day is a necessity – but I’ve also learnt about graphic design, and our finished products were the DCCS posters and leaflets that are now distributed throughout the libraries and community centres of Dundee! Keep an eye out for them folks! Anyway, I’ve really enjoyed my time here so thank you for having me – but you’re not escaping me and my incessant posting that easily! I’ll be back in the Space regularly to keep up to date with what’s happening and hopefully to keep broadcasting information about DCCS over social media. But for now, Caitlin Mitchell, signing out!