Posted April 20, 2014 by Yuri Mangahas in Comics

KOMIKS REVIEW: ‘Buhay Habang Buhay’ – A Love Affair That Lasts To Afterlife

Writer: Paolo Herras
Artist: Tepai Pascual
Publisher: Meganon Comics

More often than not, we hear the idea that comic books aren’t fit to be translated to film due to the limits of the medium. That could easily be true, since some storytelling elements of the comic book genre cannot be replicated in any other visual art, particularly the movies. That is the norm, even after the descent of these big superhero flicks. But what if I tell you there’s a local comic book that has the feel of an art movie? Yes, folks, I kid you not. Enter, Buhay Habang Buhay.

Buhay Habang Buhay is Paolo Herras and Tepai Pascual’s second project as a team since Noodle Boy. Unlike their previous work, it reels on the edge of the supernatural, whilst bringing an air of maturity in it, without compromising the styles of the two.

The story revolves around the lives of Joel and Sandy, a husband and wife couple whose relationship seems to be strained in part to the latter’s fears of a ghost mistress. A freak accident sends Sandy into her early demise, prompting her to spend the next five years of her afterlife guarding Joel. However, her fears soon translate to reality as the Ghost Mistress returns, causing a strange chain of events to be put into motion.

This book is a feast for the eyes. It exhibits Tepai’s natural capacity to render excellent sequence art with total finesse, coupled with her neat usage of monochromatic colors, which complements the story nicely. The perspective of the shots are also spot on, thus, making this book feel like a movie. I can actually imagine the panels as scenes in a film. In addition, this also shows Paolo’s mastery of his craft, as evidenced by the flow of the story and the way it is being delivered. Now, if only I got enough bucks to fund a motion picture adaptation of the comic.

Another key factor that makes Buhay Habang Buhay stand out amongst other titles is the creators’ choice to rely on visuals than words. Most of the dialogue are used for key scenes only, which adds to the impact of the story – similar to how David Aja illustrated some of Hawkeye’s  issues. This is also an exercise of composition, and should be emulated by starting creators should they build their own comic book.

In conclusion, Buhay Habang Buhay is a surefire hit that deserves a bright spot in the ever evolving local scene. It shows promise, and it’s a bright one. Now, if any movie outfit reads this, please, take time to consider cooking a Buhay Habang Buhay movie. It is worth it.

10 Ghosts Out of 10


Credits to Tepai Pascual of Meganon Comics for allowing us to use the book’s cover for this review. For updates regarding their releases, you may visit their site by clicking HERE.

Yuri Mangahas

Yuri is magnanimously juggling between two managerial jobs: A technical manager position for an advertising/copy-writing company, and an associate editorial position for a fashion and lifestyle magazine. Nevertheless, he still finds time taking photos and seeking for geek nirvana.