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Review: Atlantis Chronicles #6

Atlantis Chronicles #6

Man’s fascination with the sea has gone for centuries. The depths have been explored in myth, stories, and fables. The many tales surrounding the god Poseidon reach back centuries. To this day, anything mystical concerning the sea his name is somewhat not far behind. Man has always found a deep and profounding connection to water which is only natural as it surrounds most of the world. My Dad told me he knew how to swim before he knew how to walk.

I remember the first time I read Moby Dick. I thought it was a cool story about a man and his lifelong battle with this one mysterious whale. I didn’t realize that it was much more layered than what I initially thought. It was more about a man’s search for himself and his fight against old age. I always wondered what a fight between humans and those who live under the sea be like. In the sixth issue of The Atlantis Chronicles, we get a battle between the two parties, one which will rock both worlds.

We meet Atlan, the son of the new king, who has found a bird, showing the existence of life on the surface, ad who has seen who exactly the surface dwellers are. This prompts an invasion by Atlan’s father, one which causes unrest amongst the different factions, but they persisted and killed the men who were waiting for them ashore, a hey would go no to settle into a fortress they would call, Bazilia, after a renowned warlord. By issue’s end, we find out what happened to Oren’s original expedition and how it led to Egypt of all places.

Overall, an excellent story that though it jumps time. It connects the greater story together in an exciting issue. The story by Peter David is smart and enigmatic. The art by the creative team is vivid and beautiful. Altogether, a story that only deepens with every issue including this one.

Story: Peter David
Art: Esteban Maroto, Eric Kachelhofer
and Gaspar Saladino
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Review: Atlantis Chronicles #5

Atlantis Chronicles #5

This last season of Game Of Thones was a mix of what the fans loved about the show and what made them frustrated.  The steeped mythology, the endless secrets, and the connection all these characters had to each other is what has made the audience so enamored with the series.  The investment required by fans, the fact that you cannot pick up the show anywhere in the timeline, the medieval setting, and the mostly Caucasian cast, could be turnoffs for anyone who did not give the show a chance. The show was definitely at its pinnacle as it fulfilled many plot points that they had sewn even from the first episode.

This is where the show shined. It reveled in the many different conflicts while unveiling major character flaws. It’s what made the show beautiful.  Family is one of the major threads that strings all the stories and characters together. What one does for love makes it that much more endearing. The show revealed to the audience that having more than one conflict can actually be done well and makes the story even more interesting. The fifth issue of Atlantis Chronicles continues this epic story which unravels more of Atlantis’s dark history.

We find the people of Atlantis under invasion from Kordax and Dardanus, as Kordax I the first Atlantean to control the sea creatures, even pulling sharks to attack kingdom dwellers. King Orin and what is left of his royal court go into hiding, so they can regroup and fight another day. As readers finally get what everyone had been waiting for, as Shalako and Orin have their fight in the afterworld while Kordax and Fiona, battle where a surprise victor emerges. By issue’s end, Oren is no more, and the kingdom is in Cora’s capable hands as the Atlanteans more than adapt but thrive.

Overall, though the story feels complete, David and his fellow creators give fans of this book their penultimate episode. The story by David is clever, powerful, and epic. The art by the creative continues to be stellar. Altogether, a story that will have fans clamoring to get to the next issue.

Story: Peter David
Art: Esteban Maroto, Eric Kachelhofer, and Gaspar Saladino
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Review: Atlantis Chronicles #4

Atlantis Chronicles

Every few years when I was in the military, we had what we called a “change of command.” This was when the commanding officer of a command transfers and a new commanding officer assumes control. This is what made most of us used to change and become quite adaptive. It continuously came down to how the old regime ran things an how the new regime would do things differently.

Within our political elections, the public faces changes every 4-8 years, depending on if the American public likes the current direction of the nation. We have seen and every country in the world has seen what happens when a despot takes control. Every transition of power possesses their unique struggles. In the fourth issue of Atlantis Chronicles, Oren steps down as ruler, transferring power to his daughter, Cora, which presents its own challenges.

We find weathered down version of King Oren, as he has outlived most of his contemporaries, his outlook becomes increasingly grim, as agitators, such as his nephew, Dardanus, are constantly looking for reasons to remove him. As the serum him and his brother created begins to show its side effects, even mutating some infants, making them fishlike which pushes Oren to find a new way for his people to survive leading them o eventually becoming part of the sea without the aid of the serum. This also gives Oren the clear state of mind to realize it is time to step down and let Cora be queen, but not everything goes as planned, as the fruit of Cora’s and Dardanius’s wild tryst has also came back to claim the throne. By issue’s end, the kingdom has barbarians of their own at the gate and more than blood will be spilled.

Overall, an exciting issue in this epic and elegant history that makes up what Aquaman knows of Atlantis. The story by Peter David is suspenseful, layered, and dramatic. The art by the creative team is beautiful. Altogether an excellent issue which shows the talent of David as a storyteller.

Story: Peter David
Art: Esteban Maroto, Eric Kachelhofer,
and Gaspar Saladino
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Review: Atlantis Chronicles #3

When it comes to the subject of civil war, it is an especially tough issue to speak of in light of the current political climate. The rest of the world tends to look at our Civil War as residual effects of slavery. As anyone who has read about the events that lead to that point can see war was inevitable. Lincoln became the last straw for most southern states. It is this buildup to war, which is where many can find the root cause before the battles began.

In the third issue of The Atlantis Chronicles, we find a war brewing between the two peoples of Atlantis, one that may change the kingdom forever.

We are taken to a time when all Atlantians have been more than familiar with their very different living conditions. As a feud between the two dominant tribes, Poseidonis and Tritonis over land and fish, has caused a rift within the kingdom. King Orin, now an old man, keeps the uneasy truce together by a string of promises and political appointments. Everything changes, when Dardanus, Shalako’s long lost son reappears in court, it fuels long gestating hate between the two groups, as the Tritonites, become emboldened by his reappearance.  By issue’s end, a forbidden romance plants the seed of a dark secret that will alter the people of Atlantis.

Overall, an engaging installment where past sins become the undoing of a family. The story by Peter David is intense, intellectual, and full of twists. The art by the creative team is beautiful. Altogether, a powerful tale that gives readers a complex rich history of this dense mythology.

Story: Peter David
Art: Esteban Maroto, Gaspar Saladino
and Eric Kachelhofer
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Review: Atlantis Chronicles #2

Atlantis Chronicles #2

The true mettle of a leader is tested when they are in the heat of battle. Being in the military, I saw how so many people in leadership roles would fail on a consistent basis. It would infuriate so many of us, even when we got in those roles, as we saw the true failing came from the top down. These missteps and just plain poor decisions would often put us in some dangerous situations. Often the major root cause being the personnel who were making these decisions had no idea what the job truly entailed.

Being a civilian now, I see that the problem is not isolated to the military but is widespread to just about every workplace. What is true no matter where you work is that when an uncomfortable situation presents itself only a true leader will emerge. Others cower and tend to blame their subordinates for any blunders. Many men and women have become who they are when they are faced with a crisis. In the second issue of Atlantis Chronicles, we see how King Orin responds now that Atlantis has sunk beneath the sea.

We find the kingdom in a state of chaos as the Technocrats and the Shalakites, followers of Prince Shalako, fight each other, blaming each other for the fall of the kingdom beneath the sea. As Orin attempts to quell any disagreements within the kingdom, Shalako delves deeper into his connection with the dark forces, making a sacrifice of his own wife. Eventually the air within the dome begins to dwindle and the dome gets cracked, and the discontent amongst the people rises to an all time high, leading Orin to direct creating a serum which allow his people to breathe underwater. By issue’s end, a new age of Atlantis has spawned, but Shalako’s time has ended as his followers turn on him, destroying the castle and leaving the kingdom in tatters.

Overall, another entertaining chapter in this thrilling prequel, as the saga of Aquaman’s ancestors is simply exhilarating. The story by Peter David is smart, well developed and action packed. The art by the creative team is simply beautiful. Altogether, a grand entry in this beautiful story of how a society adapts when all they know is no more.

Story: Peter David Art: Esteban Maroto and Eric Kachelhofer
Story: 10 Art: 9.5 Overall: 9.4 Recommendation: Buy

Review: Atlantis Chronicles #1

Atlantis Chronicles #1

There is a level of attraction for readers of high fantasy which usually draws them to Terry Brooks in the first place. His books are usually steeped in lore and imagined worlds shaped by the past. Each story carefully taking the reader on a journey through eyes of a few narrators, each possessing an attribute that his audience can empathize with. Take for instance his Shannara Chronicles books, which spans over hundreds of years and literally feels like it has a cast of thousands. Of

As one of the first books that introduces readers to the Sword of Shannara, gave readers a ground floor view of what his world yielded.  The book that often got many readers including me enveloped into this mythology was First King of Shannara, the prequel to Genesis of Shannara book series. I often wondered if this could apply to many of the superheroes that occupies the current pantheon within comics? We get one such story that begin in the first issue, “The Deluge” of Atlantis Chronicles, as we find out how the mighty kingdom of Atlantis rose up those many years ago before Aquaman.

We meet Albart of Ancinor, a historian, who has seen enough of the royal family to understand that his current appointment does not dismiss the disarray the royal court has been in since King Orin has been in power and his contentious relationship with his brother, Prince Shalako. As one of the many mistakes he carries out is sharing the realm’s weapons with neighboring city-states which causes one sovereign to invade the kingdom’s borders, further causing dissention amongst the court including Shalako who believes in the worst of people, leading to a major disagreement between the brothers. As Orin orders the building of a dome to protect all Atlanteans, something which Shalako doesn’t think will be enough. As the dome s completed the warring city state who had invaded them, requested a truce between their two realms, one that Shalako sought the power of The Dark Gods to intervene where he felt his brother failed. As this would have a price, as a meteoroid strikes Earth, it would also affect Atlantis. As Orin sends his emissary, Rajar, the neighboring city state takes their revenge, killing Orin’s old guard. By issue’s end, Orin comes around to Shalako’s way of thinking, in what goes into far reaching consequences, and what might mean the destruction of Atlantis.

Overall, a dense history that feels almost biblical in its telling while reminding readers that these were the descendants of Aquaman. The story by Peter David is engrossing and heartbreaking. The art by the creative team is gorgeous. Altogether, a fascinating prequel that makes Atlantis even more epic than it does with Aquaman included.

Story: Peter David Art: Esteban Maroto and Eric Kachelhofer
Story: 10 Art: 9.7 Overall: 9.5 Recommendation: Buy

Preview: Red Sonja: The Ballad of the Red Goddess

Red Sonja: The Ballad of the Red Goddess

writer: Roy Thomas
artists: Esteban Maroto, Santi Casas
cover: Esteban Maroto
Black, White & Red | 88 pages | $19.99 | Teen+

A stunning new original graphic novel produced in cooperation with leading Spanish publisher Planeta, from the legendary creative team of writer Roy Thomas, artist Esteban Moroto and the incredible talent of Santi Casas – presented here as an oversized hardcover and featuring a spectacular use of black, white and RED!

Never before seen in English, this Hardcover OGN is an all-new tale, lost from the Nemedian Chronicles – until now!

The very origins of Sonja are cleverly teased as the masterful Roy Thomas weaves a tale of intrigue, deception and the search for eternal youth.

Red Sonja: The Ballad of the Red Goddess

Preview: Prison Ship

Prison Ship

Bruce Jones (w) • Esteban Maroto (a & c)

Showcasing the beautiful black-and-white art of the renowned Spanish artist Esteban Maroto in this science-fiction space opera first published in the 1980s.

Diana Jacklighter has been assigned what should be an easy mission, transporting a group of criminals in suspended animation, but after her ship is struck by a meteor and crashes, the plague-stricken prisoners escape and Jacklighter must head out and capture them.

HC • B&W • $19.99 • 96 pages • 8.5” x 11” • ISBN: 978-1-68405-159-5

Preview: Lovecraft: The Myth of Cthulhu

Lovecraft: The Myth of Cthulhu

Esteban Maroto (w & a & c) • Santi Casas (cover colors)

Illustrated in haunting black and white over 30 years ago, these comics are re-presented in a new edition, adapting three of H.P. Lovecraft’s most famous stories involving the Cthulhu Mythos.

“The Nameless City” is considered the first story of Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos, detailing the discovery of an ancient city in the deserts of the Arabian Peninsula built by an unnamed race of reptilian beings. In “The Festival,” a man arrives at the sea town of Kingsport, Massachusetts during Christmas but finds a place eerily empty and centuries out of date. “The Call of Cthulhu” is perhaps Lovecraft’s most famous story, describing a man who, after finding the notes of his granduncle, is lead on a journey around the world in search of a mysterious and disturbing phenomenon.

HC • BW • $19.99 • 80 pages • 8” x 10-7/8” • ISBN: 978-1-68405-125-0

Preview: Masters Of Spanish Comic Art

Masters Of Spanish Comic Art

writer: David Roach
artist: Esteban Maroto, Sanjulian, Jose Gonzalez, Jordi Bernet, Enrich, Victor De La Fuente, Jose Ortiz, Luis Garcia Mozos, and more
cover: Enrich
FC • 272 pages • $39.99 • Mature

Masters of Spanish Comic Book Art is a celebration of the great artists who revolutionized horror comics in the 1970s with their work on Warren’s Vampirella, Creepy, and Eerie horror comics. This first-ever comprehensive history of Spanish comic books and Spanish comic artists reveals their extraordinary success — not just in Spain and America, but around the world. Containing artwork from over 80 artists, this in-depth retrospective includes profiles of such legends as Esteban Maroto, Sanjulian, Jose Gonzalez, Jordi Bernet, Enrich, Victor De La Fuente, Jose Ortiz and Luis Garcia Mozos. With 500 illustrations, over half scanned directly from the original artwork, Masters Of Spanish Comic Book Art honors the “Golden Generation” whose artwork inspired the imagination of comic book lovers everywhere.

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