Comic Review: Yasmeen #2 (Scout Comics)

It’s heartbreaking and gut-wrenching, and it’s Yasmeen #2 from Scout Comics. Yasmeen, a 16-year-old girl, now in the United States, is from Iraq. Captured by ISIS, she underwent 2 years […]

It’s heartbreaking and gut-wrenching, and it’s Yasmeen #2 from Scout Comics.

Yasmeen, a 16-year-old girl, now in the United States, is from Iraq. Captured by ISIS, she underwent 2 years of slavery. The echoes, rebounds, PTSD, and cultural differences between her idyllic early days, her capture and forced sex slavery, and her present-day high school life are the subject of this tremendously touching title.

Writer Saif A. Ahmed gets it right. He paces the story, clicking back and forth to various times in Yasmeen’s life, mining deep emotions. Yasmeen has a lot going for her in the days before capture and is a broken, tormented teen in the aftermath. Like perhaps a therapy session in a comic book, Ahmed’s account of Yasmeen’s ordeal are both cathartic and shocking. What is most shocking, perhaps, is the realization that though this is a fictional story, the events are based on true situations.

The artwork by Fabiana Mascolo is clear and clean. The matter-of-fact, unembellished presentation, with gorgeous handling of peoples’ features, gestures, and expressions, are beautifully handled. The colour is also crisp and precise; environmental lighting, sterile surfaces yet unspoiled. The brutal moments are made even more brutal in this evenhanded way. The brutality is not shown to the reader, rather it is implied.

If you are compelled to read about international cultures and communities and have a sense of what human struggles are being felt across the globe, Yasmeen can serve as an eye-opening, personalized primer on power, innocence, immigration, and resilience. Highly recommended.

Scout Comics, Yasmeen #2, $3.99 for 25 pages of content. Teen+

Alan Spinney

About Alan Spinney

After a career of graphic design, art direction and copywriting, I still have a passion for words and pictures. I love it when a comic book comes together; the story is tight, and the drawings lead me forward. Art with words... the toughest storytelling technique to get right. Was this comic book worth your money? Let's see!!