This was one of those books that I didn't pick up in single issues when it came out in 2021, but it was something I was very intrigued and excited to picking up in trade in 2022, and I'm glad I did.
When I read it for the first time, I knew it was something I'd have to think about for a bit before writing a review, but last night I decided to re-read it so I could finally write that review.
The first thing that struck me about this trade was how the series was collected, as there aren't any issue breaks between issues. That's not necessarily a bad thing (in fact it works for the story) but it was unexpected. That makes it very easy just to read all the way through. When I read it again last night that's exactly what I did.
Made in Korea is a very interesting story, from the concept to the way it's executed to how it progresses. It's a relatively simple plot on a relatively small scale, by which I mean there aren't many elements to it (but again that's not a bad thing), but at the same time it manages to pack so much depth, nuance and really say what it wants to say throughout all 6 issues.
It's a fascinating read to check out if you're interested, but in particular it's a story that will feel both uniquely executed and all too familiar to anyone who's ever considered themselves "different" or has had trouble fitting in.
The artwork is perfect for the story. It has a very clean, sparse feel to it where everything is communicated effectively from the expressions of the characters to the sequence of events of the story, but nothing is too crowded or over-used.
In particular I noticed and loved the dichotomy of the bleak feeling sparseness of the office compared to the warm cosy homeliness of, well, Jesse's new home.
It's all so thoughtfully, thought-provokingly done, right up to the final page.
After the end of the book there are some very short stories, which I assume were from the end of each issue, so those were fun extras.
Overall the production quality of the trade itself as well was very nice, it felt well worth it from everything including that to the great story, art and lettering if you're at all interested!
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