Graphic Novel Review: Trish Trash: Rollergirl of Mars The Collected Edition by Jessica Abel

Trish Trash: Rollergirl of Mars The Collected Edition by Jessica Abel. Backgrounds and designs by Lydia Roberts, colors by Walter. SuperGenius, 2018. 9781545801666. 208pp.

Trish isn’t quite old enough to join her local roller derby team, the Terror Novas, but that doesn’t stop her from skipping school to try out anyway. Trish’s skill at repairing technology gets her a gig as a skategirl, which isn’t exactly a place on the team but she’s pretty happy with it. But her aunt and uncle can’t believe she signed an intern contract — they need her help on their moisture farm. Marq can’t believe she signed away her rights, either — he’s a politically active vlogger with a progressive agenda (which will bring him unwanted attention from the corporation / government that runs things).

As Trish tires of being treated as a slave, she helps a native Martian who is in need of water. Her kindness is repayed in two ways, with special skates for her and her teammates that allow them to practice in the dusty Martian landscape, and via the gift of a plant that helps harvest water. When Trish and her family try to use and spread the gifts, Marq tries to push an agenda of cooperation with the natives. But the authorities want to keep doing things the way they’ve always been done, which includes making the humans fear the Martians.

I read the first volume of this story years ago, and somehow missed both that the series had finished and that this omnibus edition had been published. This was the first book I checked out after I was able to browse the Seattle Public Library’s shelves again in person this summer! And I like it as much as Abel’s previous graphic novels, Out on The Wire (about radio storytelling on your favorite NPR shows) and La Perdida (about an American woman living in Mexico City).


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