Written by Rosi Woo and drawn by Dylan Goss; Mara is the first webcomic by Stuffed Rock Studio about the “littlest barbarian”. The comic is only in its early stages of release, with only one chapter and parts of the second chapter available so far. This means there’s nothing much for readers to sink their teeth into—yet. In the first handful of pages, we meet the main character, Mara. From there, we see the early beginnings of her story.
Mara is a young barbarian girl, out in the wild with her father. The two seem to have just come back from fishing. On their way home, we see that Mara’s tribe is a religious bunch; they worship a wolf god named Amaruq. She and her father leave a fish behind as an offering to the god’s statue. After this, Mara and her father return home, and we meet Mara’s mother who is preparing dinner for them. However, before we can learn more about the characters, they hear a noise from outside. The father tells Mara and her mother to hide.
Mara has both positive and negative aspects to it. It is very visually pleasing, despite the lack of vibrant colours. This is a credit to Woo; while it can be difficult to make a comic lively and appealing when the colour palette is on the neutral side, she manages to make it work. The story so far is also very interesting and engaging. It clearly doesn’t waste any time trying to establish the origins of Mara’s journey.
One problem I have is that it’s difficult to distinguish which of one of the men is Mara’s father during the battle scene. This is because in the beginning of the story, we see that he has a blonde streak in his hair. But there is no one with such a feat throughout the battle. The end of the comic also mentions that everyone is dead in her tribe, except for Mara. But we never see what happens to her mother. It’s all so confusing. All of that is probably because it’s still ongoing. But it might help for the comic to have a little bit more consistency.
Overall, I will say that Mara is off to an interesting start. There is honestly not too much for me to go off of to make a definitive decision as of yet. But it does show potential; it’s just a matter of where it goes from here. Outside of the comic itself, the only real issue that I can see is that as a webcomic, the website UI has an annoying feature. The subscription box always pops up with every click of the next page, blocking the screen. Other than this, it’s interesting to see where the story itself goes from here.
Interested to get to know Mara and her tribe? You can read Mara over on the website. Then, if you like it and want to continue supporting Stuffed Rock Studio, you can support them on their Patreon. Have you read Mara? What do you think about it? Let us know in the comments below, or on our Twitter and Instagram.