Heavy Metal Comics 2020
Created by Dylan Sprouse
Written by Dylan Sprouse & Joe Harris
Illustrated by Diego Yapur
Coloured by D.C. Alonso
Lettered by Saida Temofonte
Ninth century Norway is a land of bloody and civil strife, fanatical religious upheaval, and exploration. At its center is the warrior Kveldulf Bjalfisson, a drug addict and father willing to become a monster in order to save his son from his sworn enemy - King Harald Fairhair.
I read so many books in a week, every week of the year, so when I find something of this calibre of talent, skill and verve you just have to sit back and admire it. Not for too long though because the story is amazing and the interiors are bloody brilliant in how we see them. For many stories of the Vikings are what they know of through television and film, Dylan’s lucky to have these stories passed down through the generations and through that we in return are treated to them as told by a natives point of view. As a fan of Norse Mythology I am familiar with many tales but I have never experienced one quite like this and to be honest I feel like I’ve been missing out completely.
I really truly am a huge fan of the way that this is being told. The story & plot development that we see through how the sequence of events unfold as well as how the reader learns information is laid out exceptionally well. With how we see this being structured and how the various layers within the story continue to play out there is this amazing sense of storytelling that occurs. The character development is fabulous! We see the characters fleshed out further through their dialogue and how they act and react to the situations and circumstances they encounter. Also this Tracker Bard and how his or hers or its face mask can be so expressive when needed is utterly amazing. The pacing here is superb and as it takes us through the pages revealing the twists & turns along the way it is easy to see how everything works together to create the story’s ebb & flow.
The way that this reads and how it takes you through the pages is almost as much of a treat as the way the story itself unfolds. Not an easy to feat to accomplish either but I’ll be dammed if this isn’t the perfect example of how it can be done.
I am blown away by the level of quality work we see in the interiors. The linework that we see through the varying techniques and weights to create the detail work that we see is mindbogglingly good. One request I wanna see more of Kveldulf in the buff i mean he’s got some low hangers there since they travel further than his surprisingly cut member. The way that we see backgrounds being utilised throughout and the amount of work that goes into them really bring these moments alive. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels show a masterful eye for storytelling. The colour work here is absolutely gorgeous! How we see the various hues and tones within the colours being utilised to create the shading, highlights and shadow work is truly exceptional. Some of the colour choices are truly inspired and to see the various techniques utilised to lay down the colour is beautifully rendered.
This is a bloody exquisite book from top to bottom. How we see the story being told and how it is able to engage the readers’ mind and imagination throughout the books is sensational. With way too many wow and WTF moments to name this has a little something for everyone but most importantly it’s an opportunity to hear the story of those who helped shape Norway.