Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Writer: Christopher Sebela
Artist: Claire Roe
Release Date: 10th February 2016
I have been warned. One of my fellow reviewers warned me that he is sharpening an axe for me if I didn’t enjoy this comic. – I’m not afraid, he doesn’t know where I live.
A quick recap; there is still a secret war going on with soldiers taking out soldiers and being reborn, all the time being ordered about by Atlases and supported by Grunts. Mali, our protagonist, has just awoken and is destined to battle Tessa, her antagonist so that they can rinse and repeat and do it all over again. A bit like the movie Edge of Tomorrow, only not quite so immediate.
At the end of issue four, Mali and Tessa pretty much put their differences behind them and decided to go out in a blaze of glory, taking the fight to the gathered grunts and soldiers rather than to each other. This issue picks up the tale with Lorena, the ten year old girl who is also Mali’s stepfather (yes I did mean to type that). Under threat of demotion she is charged by her Atlases to find Mali if she’s still alive. To enable a 10-year-old, the freedom to travel across country, the Atlases manufacture a situation where her parents have to go out of town for a while and Lorena gets left with neighbours, who just happen to be grunts. How the Atlases manufacture the situation is quite revealing, chilling and amoral by modern standards.
Christopher Sebela is telling a tale which spans eons, and, at the same time, a tale which is contemporary. He is doing a great job of world building with this inpressively well paced tale. A bit of action, a bit of exposition, a bit of the world building I was telling you about. It all comes together beautifully.
Claire Roe makes Sebela’s clever story sparkle and really come to life. Facial expressions are wonderfully animated and there are some magnificent little details along the way. For instance, one character always seems to roll down their socks past their heels when they have their shoes off and they are outside sitting on grass. It’s a little thing, like I said, but it’s that kind of attention to detail that makes me like an artist. Thumbs up Claire, big thumbs up.
So, did I like this issue enough to avoid the sharp end of an axe? Who knows, all I can say is, you know what Andrew? It’s definitely mellifluous and not malodorous.
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The writer of this piece was: John Wallace
John Tweets from @jmwdaredevil