By Leah Siegel
What: Once Our Land Launch Party
Where: Slice Of Life Gallery, 1636 Venables St
When: March 21, 7PM
When Peter Ricq came out with the first instalment of the post-apocalyptic graphic novel Once Our Land in 2016 his imagination transported readers to a fantastical time and place full of monsters and post-apocalyptic musings. Now, Ricq, who also makes up one-half of the Vancouver duo Humans, is releasing a sequel with a story as inventive and as compelling as the first.
In the original OOL, readers followed Fritz and Ingrid’s fight to survive as human-munching monsters swarmed on their village in 1830s Germany. Now, it’s several years later. The pair are surviving — if not exactly thriving — in a time that’s post-post-apocalypse. Time has passed and humans have learned how to make do in this new monster-filled reality.
As a fun bit of trivia, the choice of setting was inspired by Ricq’s own family mythos: an ancestor reportedly once saved the actual city of Rothenburg from outside rule by drinking a barrel of wine in one go. It’s a wild story, and one that is still celebrated by Germans living in the area as the “Meistertrunk,” or the “Master Draught.”
Ultimately, what emerges is a beautiful, complex world: one full of touching family reunions (Ricq says his favourite parts to draw were “all the hug scenes”); adorable, thumb-sized alien-friends; and a cruel despot. The human-eating monsters aren’t the only villains this go-around.
OOL2’s combination of lush illustrations and engaging storytelling, simply put, demands to be devoured — then revisited, to admire the detailed work. (A page, Ricq says, could at times take up a week to finish.)
To celebrate this month’s release, Ricq will be hosting a launch party and art show, which will also feature the work of several other local artists.
Hardcover copies of OOL2 may also be purchased online at
Additionally, Ricq will be holding a special OOL2 art raffle at the March 19 at the American.