Markosia Comics 2017
Created & Written by Dennis MaGee Fallon & Jason Palmatier
Created & Illustrated by Zach Brunner
Lettered by Dave Sharpe
When the King of the Fey dies from the Black Plague, his angry young heir, Twylyth Tegg, vows to save his people by any means necessary. That same night, we meet our hero, Robb Aubert, a fearful friar of the Jedburgh Forest who has lost his faith and fellow friars to the dreaded plague. Driven by a mysterious note from the German Bishop of Hildesheim, Friar Robb is about to catch the last boat leaving the English Isles for the mainland when he crosses paths with an injured English Fairy – Danann Atreyu – a fey girl who has just lost her family to the infamous Black Cross, the Warbishop Jean De Moray. But Moray is more than just a bloodthirsty tyrant, he's a man haunted by the long-ago death of his baby brother and at war with himself over all he's done in the name of God since. His dreaded Dyrewolves track Danann's blood-trail to the gates of the abbey where Friar Robb has unwittingly taken her in. It seems Robb is harboring a magical creature – a crime punishable by death.
If you don’t know about Irish Mythology, lore and legend then you are in for a treat if you pick this up. I mean Tir Na Nog and the Tuatha de Danann are staples and should be known about. As they are pre-Christian belief in the region including the Druids who worshipped them. So that this story takes place during the Black Plague and centers around all that death and destruction as well the encroaching Christianity which threatens any way of life other their believing what they do is remarkable. It’s got this kind of historical accuracy mixed with the whole legend of what if the Fae existed.
I found the story to be utterly fascinating in that regardless of what we see it pulled me into the book deeper and deeper with each character’s introduction. The way the story here is structured is impressive and has this educational value that I wasn’t expecting to it and then flowed throughout with this ease and grace. The subject matter and the name of the book almost seem at odds until you really look at what’s going on here and it’s much deeper than The Black Plague alone as there are other plagues in play. What those are you’ll discover on your own.
So incredibly impressed by Zach and his work on the interiors. This is my first introduction to him and his work and i’ll say this i’m a fan and cannot to see what else he has in him. The way page layouts were used with their angles, perspective and use of backgrounds were extremely well utilised. His attention to detail is phenomenal and I love the way he does faces and facial expressions. The body proportions were on spectacular and the creativity and imagination on display wowed me. This guy is going to have a hell of a career.
I think the way that the history of the world unfolds and is used to fuel this kind of war with the fae in the eyes of the Warbishop is what takes this from a simple story to a blend of fantasy and alternate history to bring to life a portion of the world that too few are familiar with. The characters are engaging the characterisation has been exceptional. This is the kind of story you get caught up in so you forget about time and what’s happening in the world. If it can do this in a single issue I can’t imagine reading it as a trade.
One of the best and most ambitious debuts in recent years that succeeds beyond its wildest dreams.