Owly Volume 5 - Tiny Tales
Reviewed by Jeremy Wiggins from the Zodar Zone

Written and Created by Andy Runton
Published by Top Shelf Productions

Cover Price: $10.00
Rated All Ages
Release Date October 8, 2008

I first discovered Owly in the Top Shelf Productions Free Comic Book Day special a couple of years ago. Since then I've kept my eyes peeled for the cute little guy. Owly is the story of a big hearted owl that just wants to makes friends. There isn't an ounce of hostility in Owly or in his stories, just characters overcoming their fears. The stories truly are for all ages; I bought one for my two year old niece, one for my girlfriend's three year old little sister, and one for myself.

Remarkable in a number of ways, first off is that the stories are done without any dialog. Pictograms stand in for dialog, but the stories are predominantly visual. Even more remarkable, though, is that these cute stories are 100% honest without a hint of false sincerity or the sickeningly saccharine taste that most "heartwarming" works usually leave. Andy Runton is simply one of the sweetest people alive.

Most of the volumes are made up of either two stories or just one. This book is different; it collects all the Free Comic Book Day stories, tales from various other magazines, some previously unpublished works, and even the initial sketches. The various stories were created over five years between 2003 to 2008 so there is an uneven quality to the volume, but it is still an enjoyably sweet work that everyone should check out.

Rating the Book

Story: Overall 7
Concept - 5 out of 10
Plot - 5 out of 10
Dialogue - 8 out of 10

Art: Overall 7
Style - 7 out of 10

Storytelling - 8 out of 10
Color/Tones - 7 out of 10

Importance: Overall 5
To the Title - 5 out of 10
To the Company - 4 out of 10
To the Medium - 5 out of 10

Unfamiliar with Owley? Here Are Some Classic Story Samples!

Reviewer Bio

Name: Jeremy Wiggins
email: zodarzone@hotmail.com

Been reading comics: for 18 years.

Review Bio: I clearly remember running home from school to plop my butt down three feet from the television to watch the first episode of Transformers back in 1984. Since then they've been the main focus of my nerdom and I continue to collect the comics and figures. I started collecting other comics in 1990 so right off the bat I was there for the big X-plosion (sorry) of X-Force #1 and X-Men #1, the creation of DC's Vertigo imprint, and the birth of Image. Since graduating from OSU in 1999 with an English degree, I've had a couple of different jobs but most have, of course, been in customer service. I'm finally getting to the point in my collecting where I'm moving away from completism (and hoarding things that are no longer good) to following creators that I enjoy.

Favorites: Guardians of the Galaxy (new and old), Weapon X by Barry Windsor-Smith, Fantastic Four, runs by John Byrne, Walt Simonson, and Mark Waid, Thor, runs by Walt Simonson and Dan Jurgens, Small Favors by Colleen Coover, Blue Monday by Chynna Clugston, Owly by Andy Runton, everything by Adam Warren

Website: zodarzone.livejournal.com

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