Review – The River of Blood (Black Jack Press)

Publisher: Black Jack Press
Writer: Sean Fahey
Artist: Carlos Trigo
Colours: Jok
Letters and Design: Kel Nuttall
Currently funding on Kickstarter until 5th January 2022 (CLICK HERE)

Constantinople, 996 AD. Wulfgar and his band of Northmen have been hired bodyguards in the service of the Emperor, but when Basil leaves for Greece, Wulfgar finds that men who are jealous of their favour with the Emperor want them gone one way or the other. Fleeing north to the Volga River, they find a village starving and dying, plagued by river pirates. Spoiling for a fight and a warm bed, Wulfgar’s band agree to rid Ivan and his people of their tormentors, but things are not what they seem and Wulfgar’s men are soon facing supernatural horrors from unexpected directions.

Currently funding on Kickstarter, The River of Blood is a surprisingly good Norse Saga full of action, myth, monsters, and cosmic horror. There are very clear influences from Mike Mignola’s work both in the style of the artwork and the writing, which is no bad thing. Fahey et al clearly have their own worlds to build however, and while this might have the feel of a Mignolaverse title it’s still very much it’s own creature, and what we get in this first chapter of the story is very well written and illustrated to the point where I already can’t wait to see the next chapter in the series.

As I said above, I was surprised by this book because it is actually far better than I had expected it would be, and I’m not sure what this is doing as a crowd funded campaign when it is easily good enough to be picked up by the likes of Dark Horse. To clarify, I mean no disrespect to Black Jack Press by this comment, I just think they’ve got a very, very good book on their hands that definitely deserves to be seen by a much wider audience.

There is so much I would like to tell you about this issue but I honestly can’t without entering into massive spoiler territory. Suffice to say that this is a book I heartily recommend to anyone who is a fan of Norse Saga, myth and monsters, cosmic horror, or someone who enjoys the work of Mile Mignola, which this is very reminiscent of.

I reckon this first issue is a solid 4/5, and I think given the opportunity to develop past this first issue that it will easily get better and better.  Definitely one to watch.


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