Written by: Jérôme Hamon
Illustrations: Lena Sayaphoum
Coloring: Lena Sayaphoum
Emma en Charlotte #1 Een Droom voor Drie – Comic Book Review
Being a professional dancer is probably a dream of many young girls. Emma and Charlotte, the main characters in this new comic book series, dream of becoming the prima ballerinas in the Opera of Paris, but they still have a long way to go. Practicing two hours a day, they prepare for the big day, where they will enter the audition to study at the dance school of the opera. But is it really their dream, or is it their mother’s?
Emma and Charlotte are two sisters, mad about dancing, and classical ballet is what they’ve been practicing for years, under their mother’s guidance. It’s not always that easy though, as having your mother as a teacher can cause some friction every now and then. The girls are training for an audition for the renowned dance school of the Parisian opera, but while Charlotte seems to do everything with so much grace, Emma’s dance is, according to their mother, too personal.
The day of the audition comes, and even though both girls dance really well, Charlotte is admitted, while Emma is not. Emma is devastated, even though she is recommended to a few other dance academies. She blames her mother for pushing her too much, but when her father takes her aside for a little father-daughter time, she realizes that her mother only wants the best for her, but that maybe she should for herself figure out what she really wants. The more she thinks about it, the more she starts to doubt whether classical ballet is truly her destiny in life. But how can she know for sure that she will take the right decision?
As this is the first issue of the series, the life and ambitions of all characters still need to be outlined, and that’s exactly what happens here. After Emma doesn’t get through the audition, that’s when her life will start to change, be it probably not in the way she envisioned. Nonetheless, it’s clear that this is only the start of her journey, and the journey of her parents, as they want to support her in what she does, while at the same time you can see that they don’t always know how to do that best.
The illustrations all look quite clean, like they were made with the help of a computer program, rather than being illustrated with pencil and eraser. The backgrounds don’t hold much detail, partly because there is just not much going on in the backgrounds, but also because they are made more blurred out. The whole looks nice enough, yet a bit cold at times because of the minimal backdrops.
Emma en Charlotte #1 Een Droom voor Drie holds a nice beginning for the series, where the lives of both girls change, be it maybe not in the way they had hoped. While the story could definitely enchant us, the illustrations look a bit impersonal and didn’t appeal that much to us. Nonetheless, certainly for young readers with an interest in dancing, this will be a series to keep on the lookout for.