The defining quality of Derek Charm’s work is right there in his name: charm. His art is bright, fun, and full of character; and his writing has proven to be equally delightful in his Stela digital series, Do Over, detailing the high jinks of a young man and the time-jumping monkey that randomly appears at his door. The adorable Pepper turns back time when she gets scared, and while Zak has been exploiting her power to remedy any mistakes he makes throughout his day, he finds himself in an especially dire predicament when a mercenary appears to take Pepper back to her rightful owner. The fright sends Pepper, Zak, and their attacker back to the Ice Age, and now they need to figure out how to get Pepper to send them back before they freeze to death or get trampled by a woolly mammoth.
This preview of this Friday’s Do Over Chapter 4 spotlights Charm’s warm sense of humor, expressive linework, and evocative coloring, and his art looks fantastic in Stela’s vertical-scrolling format. Charm has worked on a number of established cartoon properties in the past (he’s also the new artist on Archie’s wonderful Jughead series), and that experience has made his art exceptionally smooth. It’s easy to see Do Over being adapted into an animated series, although most outlets probably aren’t clamoring for a cartoon featuring a 20-something gay man and his time monkey. That’s their loss, and readers looking for a lighthearted, beautifully illustrated comedy will find a lot to appreciate in this comic.