“Monstress” Weaves a Dark Tale About One Woman’s Desire for Revenge
Monstress is a new comic book series written by Marjorie M. Liu and illustrated by the talented Sana Takeda. The first issue introduces the vengeful Maika Halfwolf, a young woman who sets out on a journey to punish everyone who was involved in her mother’s death.
In Maika’s world, humans, mutants and monster live side by side. Unfortunately, the humans dominate the monsters and this has lead to war between the three species. Since Maika has a psychic connection to a monster, she finds herself in the middle of a deadly conflict between the humans as well as their otherworldly foes.
Maika’s story engulfs you, especially as she tries to control her own inner darkness or struggles against the humans’ prejudice against the Arcanics. Her flaws also make her an interesting character. Even though Maika loses one arm, she still manages to be a formidable warrior who stops at nothing to avenge her mother.
By using Maika’s desire for revenge, Liu’s comic becomes a metaphor for how humanity loves to destroy anything that reminds us of our own inner darkness. Liu also touches upon the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder and explores how the women in her comic are forced to pick up the pieces of their shattered lives in order to find their place in a war-torn country.
Although Monstress can be quite bloody and violent at times, it is a wonderful meditation on humanity’s own inner darkness and provides readers with a strong female character that defies the usual comic book stereotype.