Top Cow Productions 2018
Written by Bryan Hill
Illustrated by Jeff Spokes
Lettered by Troy Peteri
Let me say something right off the bat and that’s this reads like it’s an episode of Lucifer without the whole devilish charm and personality. This comes off as some sort of investigative show that easily draws the reader in and makes them feel like a part of the story as well engaging the readers mind so that they can think along, try to put pieces together through actions. This is an incredibly strong book that really is so much more and so different from anything else we’ve seen in the Aphrodite line to date.
Bryan does such an amazing job writing this story. The way it’s structured and the ebb & flow of how the story is revealed to us creates something that we can get lost in. Aphrodite’s mission in this era is well presented and how she’s going about it and how we see what she was sent to prevent still unfolding before her and us well it’s exciting. The fact that Martin is a stubborn man, a man who runs a multi-billion dollar corporation and whose father is well apparently responsible for all this refuses to believe in any of it. The contradictory nature of being saved by Aphrodite and his resolute disbelief shows off Bryan’s skill at characterisation.
Speaking of I am beginning to like Minny more and more as well. She has this great hard shell and I am going to assume that her face tells the story as to why. I like that she comes across as this no-nonsense bitch because that just means there layers to her that we have yet to discover and that kind of thing well that’s what keeps readers coming back. Plus teaming her up with Aphrodite and the way they interact with one another well it’s has those moments of comedy that make it clear that Aphrodite hasn’t been around humans.
The confrontation with Caitlin is where the story takes a massive turn this issue. We as the reader gets to learn things more so than the characters but they learn a lot as well. I like the direction this seems to be going in and I have to wonder about a few things involving Basilisk. Aside from the fact that we all know what a Basilisk really is or is portrayed to be so I have to wonder how far is it’s reach already and whom does it have in it’s grasp. If it’s this snake like creature it’ll sliver undetected and infect instead of turn things to stone. So who is lying and who knows more than they’ll admit? I have a nice pet theory of my own and it’ll be interesting to see if it plays out anywhere near close.
I love the interiors here I think they are done incredibly well have some absolutely stunning moments and set the whole mood, tone and feel of what we need to really have that extra impact. The utilisation of page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels shows off one of the best eyes for storytelling. The manipulation of linework using varying weights, the way colour is used to either highlight, lowlight or just for impact is so well done it’s scary. The backgrounds are utilised and how it all brings the scene together or how we view the city gives a great sense of size and scope to the story.
Just the sheer fact that this isn’t a typical Aphrodite story was enough to get me excited but then add in the mission, the people involved and the entirety of what needs to be done and Bryan exceeds the already high standards he set for himself.