I am old enough to remember the time when Anime became a cultural obsession, as names like Miyazaki and Tezuka, populated just about every conversation. The very idea that anime were considered mainstream films in other parts of the world, changed how we viewed movies. It also changed how we view stories, as movies like Akira captured the world’s imagination, leaving audiences both flabbergasted and illuminated. The one thing all these filmmakers form Japan, was something quite personal, sometimes hidden in plain view, and sometimes veiled in allegory.
Miyazaki, has always been famous for that, as sharing of his life, is what made films like Grave of The Fireflies, as heartbreaking as it is. Although many of his films are a cross between slice of life and fantasy, one of the major themes, is living in a time of war. Even to his most recent films, they deal with fighter lanes and those who are affected by it. Which is why when I read about Berlin- The Seven Dwarves by Marvano, I wanted to revisit that time.
In the opening pages, we are brought to 1993, a few elderly women visit an abandoned airfield in Lincolnshire, England, where a letter has brought to this place, which was written 50 years prior. The story takes us back to World War II and the crew of the “Snow White” an Arvo Lancaster bomber, in a middle of a dogfight. As it usually goes with extended tours, Captain Auberson and his crew, going on back to back missions, with the penultimate mission being their final night raid over Germany. By this volume’s end, the reader finds out the fate of Snow White, and so do these ladies, because they were there.
Overall, a graphic novel which shows you the horrors of war while showing humanity in the people who were there. The story by Marvano reminds me of the old Blackhawks comics I read growing up. The art by Marvano is beautiful. Altogether, in today’s climate, where everyone talks about patriotism, this story highlights those who paid the ultimate for it.
Story: Marvano Art: Marvano
Story: 10 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.7 Recommendation: Buy