Review for Zodiac Starforce: By the Power of Astra

Review for Zodiac Starforce: By the Power of Astra

25810226I read all the volumes (1 to 4) separately, but so it is easier to catalogue + review I have decided to go for this edition which combines all of them.

So, I have been looking forward to reading this one for some time. My twitter feed was full of images and squealing people who loved this series. The art looked amazing, the story looked fun, so after waiting to make sure all 4 were out (so I could go through them in one go), I read them today.

And, sighs, I know again why I tend to skip comics. The art is generally always gorgeous, the characters are mostly fun, the story is interesting. But I just HATE, HATE how we get dumped into a story, with seasoned characters, with teams already done stuff and more. And sure, at times we get some information on the characters, but generally it is just that readers are bumped off a cliff without preparation.
I so wish, that comic artists would give us an introduction, or at least an origin story, or something at least to ease us into the world of these characters, and not feel like we missed out x number of issues or years.
That is the problem I had with this story. The book starts off immediately with action, which is great, but then we find out the girl is already a Zodiac Starforce member, her friend outside is one as well, and apparently they have more friends who form a team, and they already did x number of stuff and blabahabha. Sorry, but what? Instead of making me curious it makes me frustrated. Yet another story without any introduction. Yet another story that feels like we should know more but don’t get all the information.

Also the situation with Alice, um what happened to her? Why is that one girl so frantic about her. Is Alice not supposed to be in the posse with the evil queen bee (which is such a cliché btw).

And what is up with the cliffhanger at the first issue? Um, dark powers? Some portal? Some boss is reviving? What? What? WHATTTTT???? Sooo confused.

The transformations were gorgeous though, I really felt like I was reading/watching Sailor Moon, or another Mahou Shoujo genre manga. I love the colours and how bright stuff was.
I also loved the girls’ special powers, each one had powers that matched their Zodiac sign, and I found that really fun and creative. Like our Taurus girl had Heavenly Bull Armour. Awesome!

After a bit I did start to get into the story (though still highly annoyed with the no-origin story), and I just loved the characters.

There was on other thing I didn’t like. Savi (the girl with orange hair and energy for ten), I didn’t like how she was in a relationship with a guy, but flirting with a girl. 😐 Sure, I was happy to see some girl/girl love (and later something special as well), but I wasn’t happy it was done this way. I don’t approve of this kind of stuff, and I also don’t like to see it in a book. If it was done normally, so in other words, Savi not being in a relationship (no matter how crap), then I would have adored this part of the comic. Now I was conflicted. On the one hand I hate stuff like this, on the other hand I was squealing in joy.

Also what the hell happened in issue 3? The queen bee is that kind of character? Um. WTF? Where did that come from. I never expected that to happen and I am not entirely happy if I like it. Sure, it is a nice addition, but again, it feels like I missed something important. Especially with how our girls react to it. Like it is normal, and something they were expecting to happen.

The last issue has a lot of battle, lots of choices, and something big happening, and I quite liked it, though I also thought the battle was a bit too easily done and finished.
I liked that we got an epilogue, that raises some questions, and makes me wonder about others. I was already wondering where the other Zodiac Starforce people were, considering I would think that for each sign their is a girl (or guy considering the epilogue).

The art is absolutely gorgeous, and I just adore the colours used. I also love how the characters and the backgrounds are drawn. Really a big plus!

However, with the cheating, the thrown off a cliff (aka no origin story/correct introduction), the confusion because of that. I can’t give this one more than 3 stars. And I am not sure if I will continue this series.


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