I have never in my life read a comic book that was entirely composed of photos, but that’s exactly what Avorya is. It’s a comic book with no art other than the cover and the rest of the book is photos of real people in real locations with a story to go along with it. It’s an interesting experiment for sure and it was definitely unlike anything I’ve read before.
It follows the story of Lynn Smith and covers her childhood to adulthood and the tragic circumstances that change her life. One day she awakens as an angel and given the mission of protecting her very own child. There isn’t much else to the story to really explain.
There are no dialog bubbles as everything is narrated from the point of view of Avorya the character Lynn becomes after her rebirth. Avorya essentially is remembering her own life as she comes to terms with her new life and is given her mission. The writing wasn’t bad, but I definitely didn’t need so much of her back story as it didn’t push the plot forward or even build the readers relationship with the character. Since it was an interesting experiment and I didn’t know what to expect, it didn’t bore me, but it could have been more interesting.
Also I wasn’t a big fan of the entire issue being narrated either. When the subjects of the photos actually doing a decent job of posing for the camera and I really think that dialog attached to them here and there would have broken up the narration or at the very least trimmed it down.
The photos weren’t bad, but I think a better lens here or there would have benefitted the overall product and kept it from looking amateurish at times. There were a few pages that had photo manipulation and it would have been nice to see more especially with the fantasy element of the story.
In general, this product wasn’t for me. I did find the experiment behind it interesting, but a story needs to tell a story and I felt like this was centered more around the photos and the concept and not much else. As an experimental comic it has its hits and misses. Also due to the nature of the book I’m scoring it below average, but if you’re curious to see how this works then check out their website in the link at the bottom.
Writer: Adrian Petty
Lynn Smith: Karli G
Jalene: Akiko Stilman
Avorya: Stacy Petty