Zodiac Starforce: By the Power of Astra

They say not to judge a book by its cover, but how can you not when you see a cover like this? Especially when there are five superhero-like girls on the cover with some celestial woman figure in the background. And especially when the girl on the center of the cover looks oddly similar to Rose Quartz.

Apparently magical girls have to say their names during their transformation. It’s a rule.

The comic seems to begin in the middle of Zodiac Starforce as it is revealed that the team has been split up for two years. Kim, also known as Taurus, has been trying to reunite the team, yet the others remain uninterested. Once the team discovers that Emma (Gemini) is infected by Cimmeria’s (a villain they have believed to have beaten before this comic) darkness, the four girls band together once again, in a very Sailor Moon like way.

Seeking help from Astra, the entity that gave them their powers, the girls become distraught as she advises them to do nothing since the only way to help Emma is too dangerous. As their team leader, Emma decides that she would rather die than endanger the rest of her team. In the meantime, the other girls, Molly (Aries), Kim, and Sav (Pisces) attend the school’s volleyball game. You know how most high schools have mean girls? The girls that are so rude that you find yourself wondering how they even got to be popular? Yet the reason why they can be so rude is because they are popular? And after thinking about this you find yourself in a Catch-22, questioning everything. Most of us know that feeling, and most of us would agree that those girls are monsters. Literally monsters.

Astra’s character design just proves how amazing the artwork is.

The mean girls here all work for Cimmeria and aim to use Emma as a sacrifice. The HBIC of the group, Diana, reveals her background story to Emma. Are you truly a villain if you do not take the time out to discuss your past with the person you are about to kill? Has anyone ever thought that all a villain truly wants is a therapy session? Anyways, turns out that Diana was a former member of the Zodiac Starforce. In fact, she was an original. Before Emma and her gang, Astra selected other girls to serve for her. All was fine until one battle that ended everyone’s life except Diana’s. Diana begged Astra to revive her team yet she refused and created a new one instead. This caused Diana to turn to Cimmeria, who revived her entire team.

However, unlike most villains who are unable to achieve their goal because of their hour monologue, Diana is able to sacrifice Emma AND convert Lily (will explain her later) before the rest of the girls show up. While the girls fight Diana and her team, Emma is faced with Cimmeria. Cimmeria attempts to win Emma over by claiming that Astra caused her mother to die. Emma refuses and anticlimactically escapes from Cimmeria’s grasp to help her team.

Does this not scream fusion? (Steven Universe fans??)

Sav is able to break the spell that Lily is under through confessing her love for her. But that’s not all, once the two of them kiss, Lily becomes Libra. As soon as Emma escapes, Diana loses her powers because she is no longer needed by Cimmeria and the Zodiac Starforce remains victorious. Although it seems as if the series could end there, the epilogue reveals that there are more members in the Zodiac Starforce (and we better get to know them).

This is not a comic with magical girls. This is a comic about magical girls. About magical, diverse girls. I loved that the girls are all different sizes with different personalities. I love that they are not Sailor Moon’s face pasted on the rest of the gang. I especially like how the comic focuses on who the girls are rather than how they get there. The team does not need to be formed because it is already established. Everything about the comic seemed effortless. The charm of each character paired with the vivid colors and artwork. How Sav and Lily effortlessly develop a relationship without any characters questioning or becoming shocked by it. The comic also appealed to me, because as you saw in my review, much of it reminded me of Steven Universe due to:

What? It reminds me of Steven Universe because of its powerful female figures. . .

Rating: ★★★★★

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