Review: Ruaille Buaille 2
Ruaille Buaille #2
Edited by: Aidan Courtney.
Stories by: PJ Holden, Scott Ferguson, Mike Lynch, Rebecca Nalty, Maeve Clancy, Alan Nolan, Ciara Murphy, Triona Farrell, Alan Ryan, Philip Barret and Katie Fleming.
Ruaille Buaille #2 is the first comic published by Coimici Gael (or by anyone else for that matter) that I’ve read that is entirely in Irish. The art provided by Alan Ryan for the cover is great and I couldn’t wait to crack open the comic and dive right in. Even with my limited Irish vocabulary. It’s just such a bright and fun looking cover. How could you not have a gander at the stories contained within?
First story is ‘Nicól Óg’ by Philip Barrett. Nicól óg is excited about the upcoming release of the game Space Bear but is convinced that it will be sold out before she can get a copy. She tries various things to get the money for the game. The strip ultimately reads as a message on the power of imagination. It’s a wonderfully drawn strip that really helps the reader along if their Irish isn’t the greatest, like myself!
Next up is ‘An Chomharsa Nua’. It’s written and drawn by Clara Murphy with colours provided by Triona Farrell. The strip is about a young girl and appearance of a girl who is her new neighbour. The art and colours look great and do a great job of telling the story as the story contains very little text. A sweet story about interacting with someone who is different to ourselves. Do we allow our nervousness about the differences separate us or do we push past it?
‘Yó-Yó, Yó-Yóin agus an tUamhach Reoite’ is a PJ Holden story, which Holden handles art duties for with Scott Ferguson providing the script. Yó-Yó and his son, Yó-Yóin, are visiting the history museum to see the Frozen Man. They have only begun to admire the Frozen Man when the villain Professor Time appears with his own plans for the Frozen Man. The strip is a really fun superhero story with a nice twist at the end.
‘Cois Canála’ is a strip written and illustrated by Katie Fleming. The strip is about three dog, (Síofra, Saoirse and Siúcra) and what happens when they spend some time near a canal. It’s really nicely drawn/coloured and gives a nice sense of each of the dogs personalities, particularly the hyper/cheerful Siúcra.
The cover artist, Alan Ryan, tells the next story titled ‘An Gallán’. Two young hikers are out walking one day when they happen upon a Leprechaun who tricks them into taking possession of a small glowing orb. When the hikers reach the summit of the hill it quickly becomes obvious what the Leprechaun was up to. I very much liked the art and bright colours of the strip as well as the funny resolution to the story itself.
‘An Mhaighean Mhara’ is story by Triona Farrell about a young girl who is staying in a small cottage by the coast. Late one evening she sneaks out of the cottage for a walk only to happen upon mermaid. The young girl discovers that the mermaid is trapped in a small pool and cut off from the sea. A charming modern fairy-tale.
‘Brám Beag’ by Alan Nolan is great fun and reminds a little of the ‘No. 13’ from the Beano. Young monsters/ horror characters done in a comedy cartoon, something that really worked for me (both as a youngster and now). Nolans art is really well suited to this type of strip.
‘Lá Spóirt’ written by Mike Lynch and art by Rebecca Nalty. It’s sports day at a school for the supernatural. As you can imagine, there is plenty of opportunity of comedy with this story and Lynch doesn’t disappoint. Naltys art does well in emphasising the funnier moments of the story.
Maeve Clancy writes and does art for the final strip in the book, ‘Saoirse agus Sparán na Caillí Mairbhe’. Saoirse is walking along the beach when she happens upon a Witches Purse. She makes a wish and is transported beneath the sea to explore the sea-life (which the comic also invites the reader to do also with a challenge as part of the strip).
For my first time reading a Coimicí Gael comic, I was very impressed. The standard of the art and variety of the art styles was great to see. It also was great to be able to read through it and not be totally lost as to what was happening in the stories if you don’t have a lot of Irish, like myself. It’s also great to see how the standard of the Irish comic output is consistently getting higher and higher.
To get a copy of Ruaille Buaille #2, check out the list of places selling the comic on the Coimicí Gael Facebook page.
Comic-loving bookworm. Scribbler of words and images.
Not Irish international soccer player.
Can be found on Twitter @Stephen_C_Ward.