Writer: Samit Basu
Artist: Saumin Patel, Nanjan J & N. Sivakami (colors)
Published by: Virgin Comics
This issue of Devi can be explained with just one single word, and interesting enough, that word is also the title of this monthís installment of Devi, currently one of the two longest running titles from Virgin Comics (the other being Snake Woman). The English translation of "Yudh" is an even shorter but just as clarifying word: "War."
Anyone whoís read the previous issue (or even my review of it) would have had at least an inkling of what was to come next. With Lord Bala growing powerful rapidly and heading towards the "Source," the Devi, and also the forces of her followers (i.e. the Durapasya), make the move to intercept and stop him. What is it exactly that has their mystical panties in a bunch? According to the explanation given here, both in the issue and the "Story so farÖ" page, it is a vessel in which the power of untold millennia of human prayer is trapped. Obvioulsy, if this power falls in Balaís hands, it would find no good use.
While the Durapasya go up against the Darinde, the Devi makes way for Bala to find not one but two obstructions in her path. Maybe I should make that three obstructions though she manages to lose Inspector Rahul Singh pretty easily, too easily if you ask me. The Devi entity and the mortal whose body she occupies (i.e. Tara Mehta) still have to contend with each other. It is nice to see that even after last issueís cease fire and reconciliation between the two, things are still not all hunky-dory. The two are pretty new to each other, and it is not only Tara who is learning to adjust to sharing her personal space (quite the understatement, eh) with another person. Even the Devi is going through the same learning process. Even though the two of them start "talking" at the most inopportune time (in a war zone for example), both Tara and the Devi know enough of their other to make the appropriate concessions when required.
The other two obstructions in Tara/Deviís way are Iyam and the Apsara assassin, Kratha. Even on that front she gets blessed with a stroke of luck when, instead of combining forces, Iyam and Kratha start bickering about who gets to fight the Devi and take her down, something that the Devi makes full use of. In the end while Kratha makes an escape for her life, Iyam isnít so lucky. However, it is not the Devi who kills him. He gets done in by the very being that he served, Lord Bala. Having found the path leading to the "Source," Bala has no need of his General, especially one who has fallen out of his graces and who raised his voice against him. A quick skewering and Iyam is done for.
I am still not quite sure about how I feel about artist Saumin Patelís style, which was introduced last issue, especially on a title such as this. As I have expressed in my previous reviews, Devi requires loads of glamour, tons of attitude and of course a fast, fluid pace. While the pacing is appropriate, Patelís visuals lack the glamour and attitude. Even the attitude section can be accepted, to a level, but the style falls way short of the mark in the glamour and flamboyance department.
Conclusion: An enjoyable if a bit decompressed issue.
You can find more reviews by Bruce Logan at www.xcave.net
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