Lottie Person is a whole lot of person.
That’s one of the first things a reader will notice in “Snotgirl,” aside from the disgustingly awkward title, by Bryan Lee O’Malley, of “Scott Pilgrim” fame, and Leslie Hung, which follows the adventures of the titular allergy sufferer in her everyday life as a popular fashion blogger in Los Angeles.
“Snotgirl” marks a series of firsts for O’Malley. This is his first series for which he is not the main artist, as well as his first published as a monthly – now, bimonthly – comic by Image Comics. As for Hung, this is her first-ever professional project as an artist, having gained prior notoriety from her posts on Tumblr.
From the first two pages, O’Malley’s humorous writing style from the “Scott Pilgrim” graphic novels immediately shines through, with two women mistaking Lottie as “that girl from ‘Game of Thrones,’” much to Lottie’s disappointment.
This establishes part of the grand façade of Lottie Person – a popular fashion blogger on the internet with a serious lack of real-life social skills.
Past that, the reader gets introduced to Lottie’s motley crew of unique personalities and fashion trends: Misty Sutton (or “Cutegirl”) is Lottie’s second biggest pain in her backside, acting as the token frilly-clothed, Lolita subculture representative. Megan “Meg” Foster (or “Normgirl”) acts (and dresses) as her name implies: “normal” – objective-focused and to the point.
However, a bulk of the story is dedicated to the relationship between Lottie and Caroline (or “Coolgirl”), showcasing Lottie’s efforts to get on Caroline’s good side, as she does everything in her power to become the coolest person she can be in her presence.
Of course, as many of us can relate, this does not go well initially. Trying to make friends is hard, you know?
Another major conflict in Lottie’s life is with Charlene, the biggest pain in her backside and her former assistant. Mentioning more than that would go itnto spoiler territory.
On top of all that, Lottie is also a chronic allergy sufferer, and that is where her not-mentioned-in-the-story nicknamed moniker comes in. As the story progresses, Lottie goes through allergy attacks, and depending on what’s playing out in the storyline, it could be mild or intense, leading to some awkward moments around her band of buddies, especially Caroline.
Lottie takes Congestex as a means of survival – possible death is a factor, after all. The real-life stakes of missing a dose of allergy medicine, as a chronic allergy sufferer, are replicated well in comic book form – a real mark of O’Malley’s storytelling skill.
As for the art style, Hung’s work is incredible from panel to panel, giving the readers a vibrant and stylistically fashionable representation of California. She really shows her work with the clothes that the characters wear in their day-to-day lives, emphasizing what’s currently considered “in” in the fashion world and how it matches up with each character’s personality and aesthetic, especially with Lottie.
Given this is Hung’s first-ever professional job, “Snotgirl” is a blowout success.
“Snotgirl” is a very well made comic with #relatable characters, scenarios and lots of situational humor to keep readers on their toes, and willing to come back for more. Ghost stories, science fiction logic, buddy cop scenarios, “Snotgirl” has something for everyone.
If “Snotgirl” is on your radar, you can collect the first five issues in graphic novel form, with a second volume coming in May.