STORY BY: JT Krul
ART BY: V. Ken Marion
COLORS BY: Erick Arciniega
LETTERS BY: Josh Reed
COVER BY: V. Ken Marion,
PUBLISHER: Aspen Comics
All new Soulfire brings some great character moments in a rich vibrant world that oozes character, a false idol is torn down and the dark lord arrives in his true and deadly state in this fun issue from Aspen.
Looking at this book is a thing to behold, the studio clings to a house style set by the founder of the company, the late great Michael Turner. It looks beautiful and really emulates Turner’s style especially in the expressive faces of characters that look alive and in the detail on those characters. However, I feel that the artist is constrained by having to stick to this style, Marion sadly is not Turner and this can lead to some of the backgrounds lacking a lot of detail and the figures seeming a little thin and gaunt. The inking and coloring though, make this book shine, everything is bright and vibrant and your eyes really dance across the page when looking at these panels.
Having not read a Soulfire book before I cannot comment too much on the story how it relates to the overall plot of the series so far. Within this issue we have 2 stories running side by side, Jayden and Cole’s fight with Rainier and Malakai showing Michael for being a false idol. The fight is fairly standard fare with a very predictable double cross at the end that you can see it coming half way through the issue when the fight reaches its high point. The second story is much more engaging, you gain a sense that Malakai is growing as a character as you can see the turmoil he goes through from the consequences of his actions. It’s nice to see a character grow in such a manner and it makes you want to spend more time with those scenes, than the distraction of the big action scene that takes place elsewhere in this book.
Soulfire’s story comes in fits and starts, when the great character driven moments shine through they really do however, these a sandwiched between a pretty lack luster fight that moves the plot along in interesting ways but, does not give you the sense of satisfaction that the quieter moments in this book do. Recommended for fans of the series as this is part way through a story arc new readers will have a hard time figuring out how everything fits into place in the world of Soulfire.
By Matt Deery