Writer Samuel George London teamed up with artist Mikael Hankonen to bring us the first Milford Green book through Kickstarter last year and with a blend of Victorian adventure & sci-fi it had all the potential of becoming a big hit.
It opens with the quiet village of Milford Green in the midst of preparations for the big cycle race through the cobbled streets and inventor Alfie has his newly designed set of wheels all tweaked for a sure-fire victory. Cheered on by his friend Mary not everything goes to plan and village bully George stamps his authority in one of the many ways he chooses to flex his muscles.
As the aftermath sees a dejected Alfie get as far away from the crowds in the village as possible it’s here that a mild-mannered story in the humble village surrounds get flipped on its head with a visitor from the stars. This visitor brings a whole new challenge for an inventor and his friends & acquaintances from the village but the hectic chase that unfolds is well-developed by Samuel as he makes this an entertaining adventure for central characters & readers alike.
The stunning art from Mikael is another jaw-dropping element to the story as a gentile Studio Gihibli style gives way to a sci-fi world with the awe & scale to punch home a unique blend of themes that end up working far better than I was originally expecting. In fact, it’s those humble beginnings that truly set the scene with what feels like a masterful misdirection but by the time you realise that’s what the creative team have done you’re invested and you’re already drawn in with what the central characters are aiming to achieve.
The first glimpse of the cover floats the idea of what to expect and while that can sometimes lead to disappointment, Samuel & Mikael are a slick combo who manage to hit you with a wow-factor and then somehow raise the expectations even further as the story progresses. Smart, engaging and with more surprises than you will have been expecting, this opening issue of Milford Green goes above and beyond the job of an opening issues job of introducing you to a new world…..it feels like it involves you in the story with its subtlety and stunning visuals.
You can also get hold of the newest issue through the campaign link below: