Review: The Covenant #1

Covenant01_CoverBIn ancient times there was no weapon more devastating than The Ark of The Covenant, containing a power that collapsed enemy nations and destroyed hostile invaders. The Philistine army, led by General Thane, seeks to crush the Israelites as they populate the surrounding territories. A bold move on the field of battle robs the Israelites of their mythical weapon, empowering their most deadly enemy. A young priest, Samuel, determines to steal back the Ark and assembled a group of mercenaries to aid him in the most daring raid in history. An untold tale of the Bible that shifted the balance of power in history.

I’m not much up on my Bible or Torah, in fact I detest religion, so I went into this brand new series written by Rob Liefeld, with a bit of skepticism. I’m generally not the biggest fan of biblical epics in the theaters, having avoided them like the plague in the past. The Covenant #1 comes off on the outside as one of the recent big budget epics, like Exodus: Gods and Kings, but in comic form. The interior though, was quite different from what I expected. While Liefeld in the past has had a very Michael Bay quality in his storytelling, this comic was actually a bit subdued for the comic creator.

Whether it’s due to the setting, or by choice, the first issue has a much quieter, pared down feel about it. Its focus is just a handful of characters, and where there could be over the top moments, instead things are not quite over done in the way I’d expected them. Hell, the comic almost feels like a small budget indie movie compared to past comics I’ve read created by Liefeld. The story itself is not that bad, setting up the conflict, running us through the various factions, and teaching us the history of The Ark. Its done in a solid flow that allowed me the breeze through the first issue. While it didn’t quite blow me away, I left wanting to check out the next issue.

Liefeld’s helped by artist Matt Horak. When I first read the comic, other than it being done by Liefeld I had no idea what the credits were on the issue. Horak’s art reminded me a lot of Liefeld’s, so much so that I thought the latter actually did the art of the issue. The big difference is while some of the character design, and general look is similar, Horak doesn’t display some of the tendencies that Liefeld is known for.

I went into the first issue expecting one thing, and came out of it surprised. While it isn’t totally my cup of tea as far as setting or story, it’s much better than I expected, and I’m sure it’ll find a devoted audience. If you’re a Liefeld fan, or a fan of biblical stories, this is one you’ll probably want to check out.

Story: Rob Liefeld Art: Matt Horak
Story: 7 Art: 7 Overall: 7 Recommendation: Read

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review