Northlanders #11 (Vertigo – Wood / Kelly)
“Taking place during the tail end of Viking rule in Ireland, a series of mysterious murders and arsons against wealthy citizens leaves the Viking occupiers worried that a potential uprising might ignite.”
The stories in this series are just good. It’s got so much good stuff going for it. Captivating, complex (even for Vertigo) characters. Captivating period in history. Thoughtful, careful story telling, with no easy or obviously answers or endings. No real adherence to conventional comic archetypes.
I’ve said this before Brian Wood is one of a handful of young, superior American writers, who might be able to rival the quality of our invading British friends. Brian Wood, Jonathan Hickman, Rick Remender, and Robert Kirkman (of course I should mention Mike Mignola here who is a superior American writer, just a bit more established).
“The Cross + the Hammer” starts out every bit as good. Better than the above blurb lets on. I miss Davide Gianfelice’s art, but Ryan Kelly does a more than competent job at story telling. (For another great team-up between Brian Wood and Ryan Kelly you should check out the LOCAL TP that is out now, a collection of everyday people stories, centering on a younger hipper crowd). There’s a bit too much, obvious, unnecessary gore in this first issue, but other than that this arc has captured me again. Any book where you can care about the antagonists as well as the protagonists is a good thing.
Overall: A. Quality Art, Quality Story. Intelligent all around.