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- The Red Stands for Irony
- Posts: 12208
- Joined: Sun Mar 26, 2006 7:06 pm
- Title: Bat-Min Inc.
- Formerly: BlueStreak
Comic_Doctor wrote:No Northlander review for me (and it's only my second week).
My LCS only got one copy, and it was for a customer's pull-list.
I DO plan on picking up All Nighter #1
No worries! You can actually legally read a free copy of All Nighter (there's a link on the first page of the new thread).
- Zombie Guard
- Posts: 9023
- Joined: Mon Mar 27, 2006 7:00 am
- Location: The Frozen North
- Title: Last Man on Earth
- Formerly: Armin Tamzarian
Northlanders was always a tricky sell. A historical comic anthology comic with a rotating art team and a writer best known for writing stories in a far more urban milieu it was only because I had a light week that I picked up issue #1 back in 2007. Since then it's been probably my favourite monthly read featuring a flawless list of artists and a great mixture of long and short stories.
Thor's Daughter is one of the single issue tales that Brian Wood has always excelled at and as the last one in the series it seems fitting that it draws on a pair of Wood's go-to themes: Adolescence and a strong sense of place. Birna Thorsdottir has to decide who she is and what place her island home will be for her as it looks like it's all about to fall away from her. The unusual structure ought to make her choice clear from the off, but Marian Churchland manages to sell Birna's doubt and fear well enough to make the buildup to the already known an interesting one. Brina's facial expressions balance the subdued narration and brief plot to keep the story moving along and the final splash captures the danger, the exposure and the beauty of the island setting perfectly.
A great issue of a comic I'll miss dearly, this issue makes an excellent counterpart to the Lindesfarne story from the book's early days and expands on themes already seen in The Plague Widow and The Shield Maidens. In a book with no continuity, the recurring themes have managed to weave a strong thread to tie it together, and while any of the stories will make for excellent re-reads, thanks to issues like Thor's Daughter Northlanders will stand together as a whole very well indeed.
Northlanders has been something of an odd series. Sometimes it's great, sometimes it's just okay. Early on I came close to dropping it on more than one occasion, but I'm glad I didn't as the fourth volume turned out to be the strongest of the series so far.
While Thor's Daughter may have been a bit cliche, Marian Churchill's wonderful art made this issue one of my favorites of the entire series. I was first introduced to Churchill through Brandon Graham's brilliant King City series where she contributed the occasional cover, pin-ups and vignettes. I've since picked up her OGN, Beast from Image comics, but being overwhelmed with reading material I haven't gotten around to it yet. Her art in this issue was very much a departure from what you see in the Western comics mainstream and made what could have been something quite forgettable into something I can see myself reading over and over again.
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