WAILING BLADE, ISSUE #1
Writer: Rich Douek
Illustrator: Joe Mulvey
WHAT IS IT?
A brutal fantasy story with sci-fi elements that absolutely begs for its own heavy metal soundtrack.
It's hard to compare it to anything in particular, but imagine if TRON led to an apocalypse and then a medieval-ish fantasy civilization rose up out of the ashes and found some of that technology.
WHAT’S IT ABOUT?
Headtaker wields the Wailing Blade, a weapon made from technology that existed before mankind’s fall from the stars. He works for the evil tyrant who rules the land with an iron fist.
Meanwhile, a band of bandits run by Tychon try to violently take over a piece of ancient machinery that they think may be able to help their lands.
But Tychon’s father, Auros, gets captured, and they must now rescue him before the Headtaker reaches the town to execute him.
Wailing Blade is a prime example of a creative team truly working together to create something phenomenal. You can tell by how well the elements work together that this wasn't formed by a creative assembly line.
Douek pens threatening enemies and compelling situations and, working together with Joe Mulvey, the Wailing Blade universe feels both dangerous and captivating
It took over 2 years to make this comic, and it feels like something of quality, not rushed or half-baked
The Wailing Blade itself is reminiscent of Cloud's Buster Sword (from Final Fantasy VII) if it were upgraded by TRON
Like any fantasy worth its salt, Wailing Blade opens with a map
Putting the credits several pages makes it hit harder and feel cinematic
You don't often see color of this quality in indie comics, but Sotomayor & Rivera bring a skilled hand to the pages of Wailing Blade
The color palette creates a sickly environment with greens and purples that war with each other – even without context, we get the sense that things aren't going so well in this land
Esposito does some of his best work, from using colors and little icons next to captions, to the Wailing Blade's sound effects working in tandem with the art (as shown below), his lettering immerses you in the story
If you like your fantasy with a good balance of world-building and action-packed fight scenes, this is absolutely the comic for you
WHAT DOESN’T WORK?
Bloody, gory, visceral violence may not be for all readers
There's no character yet that feels like the likable hero to identify with or at least get attached to, but it's only the first issue
WHY SHOULD I READ IT?
Fantasy and science fiction meet in this bloody, action-packed comic. The world Douek and Mulvey has created is enthralling. Wailing Blade is some of the most promising, ambitious comic book fantasy in years, and this creative team is just getting started.
WHAT DO I READ NEXT?
If you like the writing:
Road of Bones #1 by Rich Douek & Alex Cormack
Marvel 1602 by Neil Gaiman & Andy Kubert
Ogre by Bob Salley & Shawn Daley
If you like the art:
SCAM by Joe Mulvey
Beastlands by Curtis Clow & Jo Mi-Gyeong
Once Our Land Vol. 2 by Jake Bilbao & Peter Ricq
ABOUT THE CREATORS
Rich Douek – Writer
Multitalented: Is also an award-winning copywriter in the advertising industry (like Yours Truly, who is also an advertising copywriter and once won an award, but in his high school Theatre class)
On the Rise: Between Wailing Blade and his other new title, Road of Bones, I have a feeling Rich Douek has a very bright future writing comics
Joe Mulvey – Artist
Multitalented: Is also "VP, Creative" at ComixTribe
Regularly posts sketches and artwork on his tumblr
Seems to be a big X-Men fan
Chris Sotomayor – Colorist
Multitalented: owns and operates SotoColor, a coloring/comics studio in which he finds work for and develops the talents of literally dozens of top-ranked colorists
Has a reputation of being the fastest color artist in the business
Teaches at/is a faculty member of Comics Experience
Jules Rivera – Colorist
Multitalented: Has also worked as a letterer, an inker, and a writer, as well as a defense logistics engineer
Inspired by manga
Also teaches storyboarding at the college level
Taylor Esposito – Letterer
Owns and runs Ghost Glyph Studios, which handles comic book lettering, production/pre-press & general design
Dream Team: Also currently working with industry superstars Warren Ellis & Colleen Doran on the Webtoon comic, Finality
Multitalented: He is also a second degree black belt in Koei-Kan Karate-Do
HOW DO I BUY IT?
Wailing Blade #1 hits shops May 29, 2019. Take the blade and pre-order it NOW!
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