Sunday, May 22, 2016

Red Sonja #5 - A Review

King Savas had expected resistance when he captured Red Sonja's most recent companion - the playwright Midy. He did not expect for her, now feeling scorned by Sonja's apparent abandonment of her, to offer to write a play that would subvert the legend of Sonja while elevating Savas and the last of his Black Talons (the women impersonating Sonja in his name) to the level of living legends. Meanwhile, Sonja seeks another legend - a giant carnivorous bird - as she too ponders the nature of legends and how she might yet save a people who don't wish to be rescued.

If Gail Simone redefined Red Sonja for a new generation of readers, than Marguerite Bennett has refined it. No longer a simple sword-and-sorcery comic, Bennett's thoughtful writing has explored both current events such as the role of the media and popular culture in shaping politics and deeper philosophical truths about the nature of heroism and humanity. In this Bennett resembles Robert E. Howard more than any other writer to ever play in his world.

The artwork operates on a similarly deep level. There is great interplay, for instance, between Bennett's monologues for Sonja and the action in the panel as each line is spoken. The battle sequence between Sonja and the roc is epically illustrated and the colors of Jorge Sutil are vibrant and powerful.

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