Paraluman: Alaala ni Maria Clara (rikki-ikotron) [UPLunarock]

I understand this story is one of the many that sprouted from the do-something-about-rizaliana Komikon challenge two years back. I’m glad the challenge created prompts like this one. This is a review of all 5 known releases of the series (including the prologue issue). (Yeah I made Lunarock happy by buying in bulk.)

BTW the vertical display they made for Paraluman worked in their favor, making me understand that several issues were already out for the story.

Emsi, a young graffiti artist, goes into a dark alley one night and becomes the unwitting vessel for Maria Clara, a fighter from another dimension, sent to ours to escape death from warrior Ibarra. This initially scares typically level-headed Emsi, and even worries her best friend Kot, who may turn out to be vessel for Maria Clara’s trainer Tasyo. So, yeah, it’s all original, just taking names from the national novel.

Part of the fun is seeing the three different dimensions Ikotron displays in the series, and national concepts being used as weapons. A good part of the story, though, is enjoyable because of watching Emsi make sense of the situation in a believable fashion. It is also great to see a strong, thinking, practical, un-weepy female character from a male creator. Several strong female characters, even.

Paneling is uneven and messy in certain places, and typesetting tends to spill over in many places. The art is consistently well-drawn throughout, and the presentation on the whole is good. Story progression is even-paced, though it has points where the story rushes too much or drags too much. The characters on both sides are all interesting and unique from each other, without needing to use last-page info-dumping to show their personalities.

In general the series is worth the follow, and the komik continues to improve with each new release. Keep up the good work!

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