Titan Comics 2016
Written by Gordon Rennie
Illustrated by Andrea Olimpieri
Coloured by Marcelo Maiolo
Art Assists by Nathan Ramirez & Samuele Coletti
Lettered by Rob Steen
Dunwall. Twelve years have passed since Corvo Attano ended the Lord Regent’s treacherous plot against the throne and cleared his name. Corvo now serves as Royal Protector to his daughter, Empress Emily Kaldwin. He has been searching for an apprentice – whom he found in a guardswoman named Martha Cottings. Investigating the Roaring Boys gang, Corvo was attacked, and only Cottings’ quick wits saved him. Someone is arming the gangs with contraband weaponry in an attempt to bring open warfare to the streets... Someone who is luring Corvo into a trap with a young boy who is the image of his long-missing older sister…
I have to say i’m a fan of the story Gordon is bringing us here. From it’s surprisingly tender and naive opening to the harsh reality of the life Corvo, and Martha, leads it’s a wonderful blend of action, intrigue, magic and steampunk. Gordon draws you into the story and you keep reading till the end enrapt in the pages and then have something akin to withdrawal when it’s done. What we get isn’t enough we want more and that is the sign of a gifted storyteller.
I love the innocence and naivete of the opening when Beatrici disappears and Corvo has his dreams of the future. Then jumping to the present and hearing his assessment of how naive he was well it’s a just a strong bit of characterisation and character development. That he blended his childhood dream and used that to hunt for his lost sister well it just makes so much sense and tells you a lot about him.
What Andrea does with the interiors here is amazing as well. I love the look and feel of the flashback with it’s softer more romantic look and feel compared the harsher more detail oriented dark look at the present. The use of panels in the page layouts is a great way to show the flow of the story and his unique viewpoint in storytelling. The use of backgrounds is fantastic and fleshes out the world around them. The attention to detail in the people and the scenery it just really has this profound effect upon the reader.
That both Corvo and Martha are following different leads and yet the same case of sorts is great. Two different approaches that would actually benefit each other if working together. The way each is presented side by side intersecting the story so nicely that the focus keeps changing is done so well. It’s a perfect example on how to keep the pacing, story development and characterisation moving ahead in sync with each other.
There’s also an appreciation from me here that they have bad luck in their search, what kind well you’ll have to read to understand. Following leads and using informants and research can only go so far as luck will play a factor whether you believe in it or not. I look forward to seeing where this goes next. With stellar story progression, characterisation and interior artwork this team is telling the kind of tale that we love to get lost in.