Comic Review: Home #1 (Image Comics)

A heart-touching new title from Image, Home #1 is about immigrants. It’s a long way from Guatemala City to the Mexican-American border. Approximately 2600 miles. And in Home, we follow […]

A heart-touching new title from Image, Home #1 is about immigrants.

It’s a long way from Guatemala City to the Mexican-American border. Approximately 2600 miles. And in Home, we follow a mother and son on their northbound journey. It’s a sobering trip for Mercedes and Juan, with the then (pre-Biden) US official stance being one of active discouragement toward Central American immigrants. It ain’t exactly Planes Trains and Automobiles, and there’s no ticker-tape parade or balloons.

When they finally arrive at the US border and declare refugee status, the drama starts, and so do the surprise twists. It turns out that Juan is no average kid!

Julio Anta writes and Anna Wieszczyk illustrates Home. Colourist is Bryan Valenza, with letters by Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou. Covers by Lisa Sterle, and Jacoby Salcedo. The line art is easy to follow, with large panels and good body language for the characters. The exaggeration is a bit playful, but the message is grim. Valenza colours in a realistic way, keeping the palette restrained. It’s not Dayglo Agave, it’s not High Sierra, what with the greys and browns washing throughout.

The first issue reads well enough and contains some dramatic tension, particularly once Mercedes and Juan enter the US. But a ‘real’ immigrant journey from Guatemala to the US border, as we all have read, is potentially fraught with terrible dangers. The ‘coyotes’, the heavily packed trains, the extortionists, the gang-controlled towns to make it through, and so on. There were opportunities during this first eight pages to really send ‘home’ these dangers to the reader. It could have been made more exciting, and more urgent for them to reach safety quickly.

Having said that, we urge our characters to bring us insight and provoke our emotions, as we follow their experiences in the American immigration system. The five issues run monthly through August.

Image, Home #1, $3.99 for 28 pages of content.

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!!