(Victor Valley)—Red Sonja, the She-Devil with a Sword, jumped off the pages of Conan the Barbarian’s comic in 1973 and has been a staple in the fantasy realm of comics ever since, being published by an array of companies. In 2005, Dynamite Comics brought the crimson haired heroine back to the land of sequential art, and now, in 2016, we have a brand new series, taking Sonja in a new direction.
From writer Marguerite Bennett (Angela: Queen of Hel) and artist Aneke (Steampunk Battlestar Galactica: 1880), this debut issue kicks off with a bang, as the King of Hyrkania is dying, and the kingdom is bracing for change. Red Sonja travels to the kingdom in time to see the beloved ruler leave this world, and with his passing, leave the fate of the lands in uncertainty. What rises from the ashes looks to be a power that keeps the land safe form enemies and monsters- bad news for a warrior like Sonja. But not all is sunshine and roses, as Sonja soon learns.
Bennett has written strong, female leads in the past, so she is an ideal choice for the new Red Sonja series. She creates more dimensions to the character than have been seen in past series: we see a more human, more comedic She-Devil, but at the same time, we have that warrior spirit that we have come to love. Aneke’s art fits the series’ tone nicely. A major change here, which can be seen from the cover, is the redesign of Sonja’s iconic design, which was essentially a chain-mail bikini. Slightly more covered up now; her new look still exudes the essence the fiery fighter: she still looks and feels like Red Sonja.
Dynamite is off to a great start with this first issue. We have a nice set up of things to come, and we have a glimpse of how badly things can change with one simple choice made by our heroine. Red Sonja is back, and by Crom, it is time to rejoice.
Rating: 9.0 out of 10.
This review was created in conjunction with QBC Toys and More, a local comic book and collectible shop located in Victorville, CA. Featuring new comic books every week, collectibles, action figures, original artwork, and more, QBC has something for the pop culture lover in us all. You can find them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/QBCToysandMore/.