Page 45 Review by Stephen
"Are they after us?"
"I hope so!"
Everyone loves to be chased.
Thirty-five pages of full-colour whimsy from one of the black and white MOOMIN hardcovers in which our flailing family of unceasing optimists finds themselves marooned on a dessert island. They don't mind: in MOOMIN VOL 7 they actively set out to shipwreck themselves, and found it surprisingly difficult!
Moominmamma's immediate priority is to go foraging for food, carrying her handbag - as you do - and hunting a wild boar with her compact. I'm not even kidding you. She blows make-up powder up its nose and into its eyes, seasons it with salt (it's a well equipped handbag) and sets fire to the poor brute, shaggy coat and all.
However, Moominmamma isn't the only Moominmummy on the island. Plus Moomintroll discovers a message from The Mymble bobbing in a bottle on the sea.
"Help! I am the beautiful prisoner of the pirates on board the black shark!"
Beautiful? Uh-oh. Well, it wouldn't be MOOMIN if Snork Maiden didn't sulk. It's so like Tove Jansson to be that random: Moominpappa, Moominmamma, Moomintroll and
Snork Maiden. Maybe Moomin's the name of the family, not the species - that's only just dawned on me!
The laugh-out-loud sequences involve the Professor who boarded the helicopter against his better judgement having forecasted a storm. A death-obsessed doom merchant, his umbrella was up before the first drop of rain and remains firmly aloft on each and every page until the, err, accident. It's an exquisite piece of timing when, after a dozen or so gloomy projections, the imminent disaster is left hanging in the air on the last panel of a page, just like the agent of destruction above the poor Professor's head. I don't think that umbrella will help much.