Birthright #8: Terrenos & Earth Begin to Merge & Panic Erupts [Review]

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From writer Joshua Williamson and artist Andrei Bressan comes the latest issue of the dark fantasy epic Birthright – my choice for Best New Comic Series of 2014. Check out our review of issue #8.

Snatched from his life by beings from another world, Mikey became a hero whose destiny was to save the land of Terrenos. A grown man hardened by battles with dragons, trolls, and evil mages, Mikey is back to save Earth from the same peril that threatened Terrenos in this series by Joshua Williamson (NAILBITER, GHOSTED) and Andrei Bressan that turns fantasy into reality.

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We were left reeling after last issue’s cliffhanger that left Mikey’s brother in serious danger — so much of issue 8 is set in panic mode. Mikey not only has to figure out a way to save his brother’s life, but the entire area he’s in has transformed into an Earth-Terrenos hybrid. It’s not a second homecoming that he necessarily wants however; as it appears a mage has sent a spirit to detain the evil within him.

Remember those hunters that appeared to be an inevitable obstacle for Mikey? Well they certainly come into play here but not in the way any of us expected. The spirit that has come for Mikey has transformed the three of them into these twisted fantasy creatures. It’s intriguing actually having these threats come across as villains because they’re certainly there as heroes if you think about it. They’re here to fight the evil that has possessed our leading man. The use of blue to highlight the creatures is a nice touch and foil to the red that occasionally pops from Mikey. The panel where he screams to get away from his brother was terrifying. Not sure how long he can keep the whole demon thing under wraps at this pace.

While all of that goes down, the flashbacks although infrequent as they have been, come courtesy of Mikey’s mother reading excerpts from his journal. The purpose of these segments as of late seem to be utilized in order to deliver  powerful emotional impact and remind us all that Mikey’s not just this hulking warrior, but at one point in time he was a little child separated from his family. If we didn’t have these moments I don’t think we’d care as much for these characters, but because of them we’re hooked into this story on a deeper level.

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The pregnant angry ex is out racing helicopters as the police are shockingly calm about the whole woman with wings and battle sword thing. Andrei Bressan is an amazing talent and his panel of the chopper takedown was wicked but it’s the final page that truly stands out. Next issue is going to be one hell of a fight and a terrific reminder that when hunting wildlife, make sure you eat all of the animal. All of it – for the love of god.

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