Giant Days Holiday Special 2018 “Where women glow and men plunder” is a big departure for Giant Days. In this case it’s literally a big departure as Ed Gemmell flies to Australia in the first issue without Esther, Susan or Daisy. In addition to that, it’s the first time that writer John Allison has drawn the book since it got picked up by BOOM! Studios. So what can you expect?
A big part of the success of Giant Days has been the strong ensemble cast so it’s a brave decision for this Holiday Special to focus almost entirely on Ed Gemmell, known for his self-doubt, big hair and bigger crush on Esther. The story picks up from the main series, with Ed visiting his girlfriend Nina in Australia. This is very much a fish out of water comedy based on Ed’s self doubts.
As with all things Giant Days, the book is full of little jokes and laughs. The humor is the trademark blend of character driven and surreal. The story is both funny and endearing, highlighting how well Allison knows his characters as the book is really enjoyable and entertaining despite having a limited number of main cast members. The setting in Australia feels different, while being exactly like Australia in the Giant Days universe should be.
It took a little getting used to seeing Giant Days drawn by someone other than regular artist Max Sarin. My only complaint is a different feeling of scale in regards to the height of Ed and Nina, although that’s only a little thing. Other than that, the art perfectly captures that Giant Days feel, which makes sense as Allison was originally writing and drawing the series before it joined BOOM!. In the end Allison’s style is understandably a great fit. It helps that Whitney Cogar retains her colouring duties, which helps the art feel so close to the main book.