Head Lopper #1: A Goliath Action-Packed Badass Début [Review]

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From Image Comics and writer/artist Andrew Maclean comes the quarterly series Head Lopper. Check out my review of the giant-sized issue #1 right here!

Nomadic warrior, Norgal and his unlikely companion, the severed head of Agatha the Blue Witch, have arrived on the rocky shores of the Scottish Isle of Barra. They come prepared to slay the sea serpent but can they survive all of the island’s deadly trials? And can they survive each other’s company?

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It’s been referred to as the most “metal” comic on shelves today and after checking out the gigantic debut issue of Head Lopper it’s hard to debate such a claim. Andrew Maclean has written and illustrated an epic tale that needs to be read and enjoyed by all. It’s equal parts funny, silly, action-packed and captivating because of this wonderful world loaded with cool creatures. Did I mention action-packed? Maclean said he wanted his issues to be loaded with multi-paged battles which is partly why this comic is a quarterly one and why it clocks in around 60+ pages. It’s huge – it’s the largest comic I’ve ever bought and it has the weight of a paperback trade.

You won’t get more value anywhere else for what you pay grabbing Head Lopper #1. Six dollars is a bargain when you realize how awesome this series is. The art is cartoony but it’s also badass – it’s an intriguing mix of something that you’d see fit right in at home as an animated Adult Swim series but the stakes are raised when Maclean draws the action. His art is truly wonderful when he weaves these huge battles. There’s a sequence with some giant wolves that Norgal cuts down where I was literally stunned with every turn of the page.

The interactions between Norgal and this witch head that he carries around with him are entertaining and I’m intrigued as to how the two came to find one another… There’s quite a bit of plotting going on in Head Lopper and the villain(s) of arc 1 are truly unique as well. I think Maclean could have gotten away with just playing the book for laughs and action but he’s managed to stuff in some cool character bits as well. I love how the king is a toddler and when people come to approach their lord, the king’s mother repeatedly asks them to address their king directly even though he has no clue what the hell is going on.

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Norgal is a wonderful leading character and Head Lopper #1 was some of the most fun I’ve had with a single issue all year. It’s hard to even refer to the Image Comics debut as simply one issue since it’s technically a bundle of Maclean’s previous Head Lopper releases but that’s what we’re calling it and I think that it’s badass. If you like the TV series Vikings, sweeping action with a hint of Adventure Time tossed into the mix – Head Lopper is the comic for you friends. You may not be able to bag and board this Goliath of an issue properly but Head Lopper simply cannot be contained by such puny restraints.

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