Slice of Life #1

my pale white woman's hand with pale nail polish holiding autographed SLICE OF LIFE #1 in front of verdant greenness
Slice of Life

Slice of Life, by Kat Calamia, Phil Falco, and Valeria Peri, with letters by Tyler Esposito and Garth Mattams, started out life on Webtoon Canvas. (Tangentially, I’m always sort of startled by the high quality of some of what hangs out on Canvas. Definitely not all, obviously, but some of it is better than a lot of the originals.)

Slice of Life is marketed as a queer love story in which an anime heroine (Lady Vengeance) comes to life and suddenly has to deal with the Real World, which includes malls, choices, and new chances. I think it’s also got a pretty strong edge of coming-of-age, maybe even edging closer to the bildungsroman side of the genre divide. After all, when Yuriko crash-lands into the Real World(™), she’s also crash-landing into a sudden ability to make her own choices, and decide things for her own life—options which were never available to her as an anime protagonist. (I’d love to see this side of things explored a bit more in future print editions and/or on the Webtoon.)

Artist Peri does a marvelous job of shifting between characters and worlds, which might be best exemplified by her treatment of twins Lucy and Ravyn. Head cheerleader Lucy is a good solid sort of kid, fundamentally logical as well as caring. Ravyn is kind of a stan. Peri navigates between two faces that are pretty damn similar, consistently showcasing the differences in their personalities. While Lucy and her “boyfriend” can look, for a hot minute, like the ideal quarterback-cheerleader couple, the tenderness of Peri’s art also reminds us of the depth and tenderness of the bonds of friendship, not romantic love.

Slice of Life #1 is a short little thing, but it gives a tantalizing introduction to an engaging world. I’m looking forward to the second issue. (And, I mean, I could totally read it on Webtoon too, but.)

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