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Sojourn #14

Posted: Sunday, August 25, 2002
By: Ray Tate



Writer: Ron Marz
Artists: Greg Land(p), Jay Leisten(i), Justin Ponser(c)
Publisher: Crossgen

Ron Marz opens a new vista for readers to explore. Ankhara he bases on Egypt and the cliff-dwelling native habitats found in the Americas. That these denizens also sprout magnificent feathers is no accident and definitely nods to the original Hawkman who of course was a reincarnated lord of Egypt. You'll also feel a definite Raiders of the Lost Ark aura in the air as you read, but more than an imitation, the artwork and hinted history behind the story relieve you of any misconception regarding originality.

The continuing story is reinforced by the presence of Trolls. Their occupation of Ankhara marks Mordath's territory, and their brutish ways as well as monstrous design sully the majestic architecture, the sweeping colors and the grand beauty of this new addition to fantasyscapes.

The tone is kept light thanks to the enjoyable banter between Arwyn and Gareth still on the hunt for the Five Fragments to call forth a legendary warrior to end Mordath's reign of terror. Arwyn's injury sustained a few issues ago nicely gives readers both old and new a scope of how dangerous she can be. One handed, she still out duels a Troll. The injured arm also acts to limit the use of the magic bow and makes their journey harder.

Much has been made over Greg Land's ability to beautify--especially Arwyn who is astonishingly pretty and the least likely harbinger of revenge you may find in literature, but Mr. Land also pays attention to more subtle details. Because of Arwyn's injury he alters her normally graceful moves. Overtly, he shows Arwyn taking another tumble, but more precisely he also shows her gait being off kilter as well as her reaction times.

Though Caesar Rodriquez is missed, Justin Ponsor's colors astonish. Oranges from firelight and reflected sunlight which could be harsh in another's hand instead lightly change skin tones and natural stone.



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