Review - Lola XOXO Volume 3 #1 (@AspenComics)

"The world is always more beautiful from a bird's eye view."

Dealing with the fallout of the apocalypse is never easy although people will find a way. In Lola XOXO Volume 3 #1 from Aspen Comics, that way involves warring tribes and higher-ups who are selfish. The issue is written and illustrated by Siya Oum and lettered by Dezi Sienty.

Lola has spent the better part of her life attempting to reunite with her long-lost parents following a catastrophic nuclear level event in The United States. But, like all things in the apocalyptic "Wasteland," the truth always comes with a price-and oftentimes that means violence - or worse, death!

Lola XOXO as a series has always worked as a larger, post-apocalyptic tale tale and Oum is continuing the world-building in the start of the third volume. The series to this point has largely explored Lola's role in the new world and Oum continues that to a certain extent. Unlike previous iterations of the series though, there seems to be more of a forward direction in terms of the story and advancing the larger, overarching plot. The issue is split between present and past which Oum uses as a means of both exploring the larger world and also setting up the end of the issue. And Oum's ending in the issue is quite the doozy as it's likely to set into motion grander events as the series unfolds from here.

Oum's art style is gorgeous in its own and his rendering of the landscapes in the issue take it up a notch. The watercolor style lends itself very well to the more organic nature of the comic as the reader really gets the sense that--despite the inherent post-apocalyptic nature--the world can still be a beautiful place. His characters demonstrate a similar appearance, although they're defined a bit more via black lines that contrast well against the settings. The panel arrangement varies from page to page, yet the way Oum mixes in dialogue boxes with overlays works very well. The book also feels very bright and airy thanks to the more organic colors.

Lola XOXO Volume 3 #1 is the start of another entry in the continuing series that explores some of the character relationships in a bit more depth. Lola is confronted with ghosts of her past and must reconcile the encounter with the current state of affairs. Oum's script is evenly paced and features intelligent dialogue. Oum's illustrations are gorgeous and infuse the book with a sense of nature and wonder. Lola XOXO Volume 3 #1 has a lot for fans of the series to enjoy.

Lola XOXO Volume 3 #1 is available now.