Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Review: Seven Warriors #3

seven warriors3
I was eagerly anticipating the third and final issue of this magnificent series from Boom! And when it finally arrived, My feelings at first, was a bit disappointed.  But when I finished the comic, I realised that I actually liked the issue for its off beat ending and the series in general.  The highlight of this book is the always magnificent art of Francis Manapul.  And there are a couple of sequences here that are gawk-worthy. 

Everything artwise on this book stands out especially the colours.

  It leaps out at you and hits you with the force of a runaway truck.  The writing however, while still great, had me thinking during the first two issues that the main players need a bit more character development and that this series would have benefitted if more issues were added.  This issue however, i noticed a bit of decompression going on, as if the writer ran out of material and was just going through the motions to finish the book.  As evidenced by the large panels and splash pages.  I did realize upon reflection, that the ending of this series actually opens the door for sequels for years to come. So credit to him for laying the groundwork for future instalments.  And as I was wowed for the most part throughout the series, I will be happily anticipating more! 
All in all, a solid book.  If you haven’t been picking it up, I suggest you grab the back issues or pick up the trade that will surely come.

Seven Warriors #1-3
Francis Manapul really caught my eye working on stories of Superboy and the Legion with Geoff Johns. Action Comics issues seemed a bit more vibrant than usual. His romantic notions and depictions of Conner and Cassie’s moonlit romance with Krypto propping up the table mid-air really struck a chord with me. This was further compounded by his amazing Flash work where I loved the way colours took his work - in a vivid and eponymous manner of vitality.

One thing that stood out was Iris. I knew his talent for drawing remarkable beauties would be something to reckon with, reminiscent of Mike Turner. On Seven Warriors, his art is muddled at times and not as exact as what he does with DC, but this sketchy style works. The colouring isn’t what he and Brian B emit on the new Flash stuff but overall, on this book, it’s pretty to look at given that it’s majority a luscious female cast. Maybe this cute style Manapul has isn’t the best style for this book, but there are quite a few endearing and sensual scenes where his work glistens. On the fight sequences and chases, a lot is left to be desired but it’s not bad a variation and detour from his usual Flash stuff. He’s writing now so maybe his style will alter on outside jobs to even more sketchy tales but overall, this book is decent to look at. Again, I reiterate that the style of Casseli, Del Otto or Vitti may have appealed more here as these Italians usually add an extra layer of grit to the format.

The decent art aside, it’s not too convoluted a plot but one, which ends up faltering on the play of its own mechanisms. There’s a contingent of female warriors hired to escort a prince to haven after his kingdom comes under siege. Basically, they have to get him to safety through labyrinths, catacombs, mazes, deserts, traps and would-be killers…but along the way, we see a lot of lusty reveals and relationship woes, as romance tries hard but still ends up floundering. It’s a simple plot but there are too many x-factors thrown in when the climax builds. It rapes your time and your wallet. What they end up finding, what they end up realising is happening physically to them and why these things happen – all kind of fall flat. The mental anguish and agony of the battalion’s trek is well played as the trauma the entourage suffers pans out well, although it kind of peters out and defeats the sole purpose of the book at the very end with a stupid death scene. It’s a lot of crap to humbly spew. The big twists really are apparent from the get-go…by that I mean…issue 1. So anyone reading comics would see the elementary tale cooked by writer Michael LG. I’ve shortened the name because I found his ending very trite and clichéd. No disrespect meant but I wanted more from the book, as I’m human after all. The final page sums up a disappointing run-in at the end, but I guess many would accept the book as it rests on the laurels of Manapul. I wasn’t one. I thought it was mostly mediocre, average at best, and depended too much on Manapul’s craft.

I thought the end would wash away my woes, but I was wrong. The end punctuated the melancholy headshake I gave when I finished it. I felt raped but I think I mentioned that already. Too bad because it had so much promise but this book falls awfully flat on its face and drugged bum.

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