Electrum - Review
An all-ages mixed race comics anthology
As described by its trade dress, Electrum is an all-ages mixed-race comics anthology. It is was originally solicited as a Kickstarter project and is available to be purchased directly through https://www.alloyanthology.com/store. The crux of the anthology is that all the stories are about mixed-race characters and all of the submissions are created by mixed-race creators.
The production value of this trade is top-notch. Cover, pages, binding, ink, heck the smell of the book all say professional quality. They employed a clever technique to help keep printing costs down: while the book is in color, all the stories are monochromatic. It is a smart move that works in lower production costs while balancing out a product that is still in color while also conveying a particular artistic bent. The stories alternate varying shades that clearly have specifically been chosen from the same shades of a color palette.The only critique I would offer is in terms of editing. As an anthology, it would be best to have stories that don’t cover the same ground. There were a few that tended to be thematic replications of others. It was nothing that I would say was a detriment to the overall work, but you would find yourself thinking, “didn’t I just read something similar?”
The phrase “representation matters” may sound like a buzz term since it is used constantly in reference to all sorts of media. The truth is that it is important now, more than ever before. In full disclosure, I am a mixed-raced person. Reading this anthology, there were many stories that hit close to home and affected me in ways that I may not have thought about in a while. These stories involved characters that, while not of my specific mixed-race makeup, demonstrated feelings all too real and all too correct because the core of the story comes from an authentic place and authentic creators. If you are looking for something different, something indie, and something meaningful, I highly recommend giving this a try.