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Royal Reviews: Sigil #1

Written by Royal Nonesuch on Friday, March 11 2011 and posted in Reviews

It's the return of Crossgen comics to the stands, as Marvel publishes a new SIGIL #1!

Comic Review Cover

Credits & Solicit Info:

SIGIL #1 (of 4)
Written by MIKE CAREY
Penciled by LEONARD KIRK
Variant Cover by ED McGUINNESS
In the war for forever, time is only an obstacle. Warriors jump from century to century, their battlefields span all of history but have led them to a stalemate. But now a 16 year old girl from present-day South Carolina will turn the tide. The symbol on her chest makes her part of this war, but will she save us or damn all of creation? New York Times best-selling scribe Mike Carey (Age of X, The Unwritten) and Leonard Kirk (New Mutants) begin the next great comic epic.
32 PGS./Rated T+ ...$2.99


Marvel Comics and then-editor-in-chief Joe Quesada made some waves during last summer's convention season when they made the announcement that they will be publishing new volumes of Crossgen Comics. Quesada said at the time that Crossgen was the key to Marvel's publishing comics outside of the superhero genre. When Crossgen was operating as its own entity in the early-to-mid aughts, the Florida-based publisher specifically avoided superheroes in favor of solidly executed sword-and-sorcery, science fiction, martial arts, and horror stories, as well as other staples of pulp fiction. They did so while trying to tie their titles together narratively through a yin ying type of logo known as The Sigil.

The Sigil returns in an all-new SIGIL #1, the first step in Marvel's Crossgen revival. The Sigil has been somewhat retooled for this new status quo, which follows Samantha Rey, a high school girl whose still mourning her dead mother and trying to make her life in school make some sense. She's really no different from so many high school aged characters, except for the fact that she periodically blacks out and dreams about existing in the past (specifically, in the world of EL CAZADOR, the pirate comic originally introduced late in Crossgen's existence).

In fact, the generic nature of the comic is really the most frustrating thing about it. Even the period sequences, don't particularly stand out much from the modern day scenes. Mike Cary is a wonderful writer, but there just isn't much here to sink one's teeth into. Samantha seems like an interesting character, but very thin, and everything around her feels so routine. Every sequence of events is really only there to lead to the next major plot point. The excitement does pick up in the last few pages, but everything before that is really not particularly compelling, so the cliffhanger doesn't pack much of a punch. The artwork does not really add much to the story either. It's fine, but Leonard Kirk's workmanlike pencils do just enough to get the job done, but nothing more. The pirate sequences have more of a sense of fun to them, though and maybe, if Samantha spends more pages in that time period, Kirk will be able to cut loose a little bit more.

Sigil #1 is a rather weightless comic that works well for what it is, but does not particularly follow up on the proclamations of last summer. It's a solid but largely unspectacular start for the newly revived Crossgen Universe. Hopefully this story, this line, in fact, can pick up some of the excitement.

Review by: Royal Nonesuch

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About the Author - Royal Nonesuch

As Senior Media Correspondent (which may be a made-up title), Royal Nonesuch tends to spearhead a lot of film and television content on The Outhouse. He's still a very active participant in the comic book section of the site, though. Nonesuch writes reviews of film, television, and comics, and conducts interviews for the site as well.  You can reach out to him on Twitter or with Email.


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