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Sojourn #31

Posted: Saturday, January 31, 2004
By: Ray Tate



Writer: Ian Edginton
Artist: Greg Land(p), Jay Leisten(i), Justin Ponser(c)
Publisher: Crossgen

In another reality, this issue of Sojourn garnishes three silver bullets. In another reality it's an average issue of the series. The story ends too quickly to dovetail to a repeat preview of the lousy, lousy, bad, bad Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang. Half of what's there concentrates on Mordath--the villain of the piece, and quite frankly, these scenes are not very interesting. Bohr, Mordath's Lieutenant, is made to look like an ass--which as previous issues show that he is not, and every body in those scenes is just slightly out of character.

The second half of the story focuses on our stars Arwyn, Gareth and Cassidey, and they interact fairly well and walk into a plot that's all right in its unfolding, but there's nothing really very special about it. The dialogue is very workmanlike to a certain extent, and the heroes' personalities do not really get to shine--apart from Gareth anticipating Bart Simpson.

What raises this average issue of Sojourn above the bar is without a doubt the artwork. Greg Land introduces a new character to the Five Lands, and her depiction simply makes one's jaw drop open. She's not just beautiful. She is anatomically gorgeous and aesthetically exotic.

Surprisingly, it's not merely the artwork that raises this issue above dismissible. I mean we've come to expect that the artwork is just going to knock the reader out of his or her shoes and socks. Edginton creates a later scene that shows each of our heroes' experience and intellect.

The worst thing that you can force a reader to do is read about stupid characters doing stupid things for stupid reasons. Here we see a very interesting little act in which all the characters notice something out of the ordinary, add to the knowledge base and do so in character. Over half of the comic books on the rack fail to manage this feat.

A slightly higher attention to detail, a better care toward the intelligence of the characters combined with stunning artwork that demands admiration makes what could have been an average issue of Sojourn another worthy addition to your brown bag.



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