By: Jamie McKelvie (Story, Art), Matthew Wilson (Colors)

What made me pick up this book? I’d probably say the striking graphic design elements on the front cover – they’re fantastic! Great use of colors, vector graphics, and typography. So how about the book’s innards?

Astrid, the main character of Suburban Glamour, seems like the typical emo girl you see working at “Hot Topic”. Immediately, that turns me off. She acts “different” from the crowd, yet she’s completely the same as all other emo / goth kids. To me, that’s completely unlikeable and pretentious. There’s a supernatural element brought into the story as she finds out she’s an elven princess living in the “human world”. With bad guys out to get her, she’s gotta struggle with her destiny while trying to make sense of her typical teenage problems.

This series started off as a typical high school drama filled with nothing but cliches. Thankfully, it got a little more interesting with the introduction of the mythological world. And granted, there’s a lot of interplay between the main cast, and you’d think this would flesh out the characters, but a lot of the dialogue seems forced. There’s also the fact that characters sit around doing a lot of explaining, which is nice and all, but how about leaving a few questions left unanswered. Why spell everything out so quickly? And again, the fact that the characters feel so pretentious and uncharismatic makes me feel no sympathy for them.

As for the art, the characters are drawn well, but the overall art is never really dynamic. It’s like the camera is always fixed around the “waist area” of the characters unless it’s a close-up or an establishing shot. That kind of bothered me. Issue #3 showcases a bit more of Jamie McKelvie’s artistic skills towards the end of the book, so I’m hoping things continue to improve.

I love the paper quality of this book. It’s got a high gloss that really makes the colors pop. At $3.50, it’s more expensive, but the page count justifies the cost. But the story? I’m just not feeling it. I’ll stick around for the last issue, but I am not impressed. (Grade: D)

– J.Montes