The first story arc in this new series from Image is based on the novel “On Basilisk Station” by author David Weber. This novel was released in 1993 and spawned many subsequent novels, so if you are a fan of the Honorverse then you’ll probably want to jump in on this series and see how it translates to the comic format.
Coming from a standpoint of never having read any of the novels, the Honorverse in its entirety is new to me. I find Honor Harrington to be an interesting character that does not simply fit into one definable category of character. The story focuses on her first mission protecting the Basilisk Station and watching over the planet of Medusa. Honor’s ship the HMS Fearless is the only ship tasked with protecting an entire station and planet and as result is spread quite thin. The main duties focused on in this issue are shipment inspections and investigating the drug problem that the native species the “Stilties” have become addicted to.
Matt Hawkins, from what I can tell, is doing his best to stay true to the original concept printed back in 1993 while making it appealing to new readers. The story moves along and a decent pace but it’s mostly being told from a flashback point of view, as our heroine is in custody being questioned and tortured reasons why not completely clear yet. This fact means that the majority of the story is told in narrative format, meaning there is a lot to read, which in all fairness is necessary to the story but can give the story the feeling of dragging on. The characters are well developed and the plot line though jumping back and forth is solid, just not your typical action packed flip through read. This may change as the series goes on beings a whole universe referred to as the Honorverse is being introduced to new readers, so once everything is established it may make for good science fiction action comic reading.
Sang-Il Jeong’s artwork really captures the eye. His style seems part painted and part digital. The characters are well defined and highly detailed, as are all parts of the environment. The designs of the ships are highly detailed and the scenes of the space station do well to show the enormity of it, in comparison to the ships. The environments on the planet side of Medusa are very well done highly detailed and show the lush landscapes and mountainsides that make up the planet.
While I am not a long running fan of the series of novels I feel that fans long standing fans will appreciate the series being brought to life in the comic medium. However for a new reader, while the story and characters are interesting in their own right, the first two issues fell a little flat for me. I understand a lot of information has to be thrown out to educate us on the Honorverse but it had a tendency to make the story drag and I was hoping for the last page around half way through. I did not dislike the story but just didn’t find it fully grabbing my attention and keeping me interested in the story.
The writer of this piece was: Shane Hoffman (aka “Hoff”)
You can also find Hoff on Twitter.