Dolls have been around practically forever. Every culture has them and each has distinct looks. Normal people just see toys as inanimate playthings, but comic creator Marty Legrow thought “what if there’s a world of small people that toys are based on?” That’s the setting for “Toyetica” and it has a lot going for it and against it.
At “Dollington Academy,” a school where little people humans call dolls learn to be models for doll manufacturers (long backstory,) a new student, a mermaid named Minky Mermille, has started. Trixie Tangle, our main lead, decides to start-up a friendship with Minky, but all doesn’t go as planned.
That’s the plot that the first issue has given up. The majority of the comic is basically backstory and character introductions told through a letter Trixie writes to Minky. While the epilogue that explains the history of dolls and humans is a great and interesting piece of worldbuilding, the narrative comes to a screeching halt when it comes to character introductions. While this is one way to introduce the cast (all at the same time,) it kills the momentum and hurts the narrative.
The story and setting aren’t all that grand, but they could be done properly. The idea of little people once being dolls and then came to an agreement to be models for dolls instead is great and a lot can happen. This might turn into another generic school life story where the characters have to deal with the same old school life drama done a million times, though.
The artwork is rather imaginative. The characters all look like actual dolls one would see in a real-life toy store. Best part, they’re all different types of dolls. There’s a mermaid, one is a boy in a bunny outfit and the hot guy looks like a Ken doll. However, the Japanese doll and Minky look a little freaky with their eyes. The other characters have normal eyes, but they have all black or all blue eyes that make them look scary.
“Toyetica” may have a great backstory, but the main backstory could use some work. It may pull some surprises but that’s yet to be seen. The art has the doll theme down perfectly, but those scary eyes on some characters have to go.