Thursday, December 21, 2017

Review: EMPRESS #7

MARVEL COMICS/Icon – @Marvel

[This review was originally posted on Patreon.]

WRITER: Mark Millar – @mrmarkmillar
PENCILS: Stuart Immonen
INKS: Wade von Grawbadger
COLORS: Ive Svorcina and Sunny Gho
LETTERS: Peter Doherty
COVER: Stuart Immonen and Wade von Grawbadger with Dave McCaig
VARIANT COVERS: Stuart Immonen; Stuart Immonen with Dave McCaig
44pp, Color, $3.99 U.S. (January 2017)

Rated T+

Empress created by Mark Millar and Stuart Immonen

Empress is a comic book miniseries from celebrity comic book creator, Mark Millar, and popular comic book artist, Stuart Immonen.  The series focuses on the wife of a ruthless galactic conqueror who escapes her husband with their three children and a loyal bodyguard.  Empress is written by Millar, drawn by Immonen (pencils) and Wade von Grawbadger (inks); colored by Ive Svorcina with Sunny Gho; and lettered by Peter Doherty.

Empress is set 65 million years ago and tells the story of Earth's first rulers.  This is a civilization lost in history, a time when people lived in gleaming cities at the same time dinosaurs still existed.  King Morax is the merciless ruler who executes his citizens with impunity.

His wife, Queen Emporia, has seen enough of her husband's monstrous ways.  She plots to take her three children:  a brash teenage daughter, Aine; a bookish 'tween son, Adam; and an infant son, Puck.  Loyal Captain Dane Havelock will pilot their escape ship, but even his skills may not be enough to keep them from the reach of King Morax.  They are eventually joined by the diminutive Tor and “Ship,” a floating, spherical machine that can teleport itself and its compatriots anywhere in the galaxy.

As Empress #7 opens, Emporia and company think they are safe, but Aine decides to take matters into her own hands.  Now, King Morax has arrived and is offering his quarry a chance to fight to the death.  But ultimately, he may be the one surprised.

In press interviews to promote Empress, Mark Millar said that he wanted to do a sci-fi comic book that was fun.  Well, Empress is fun, and I had a blast reading it.  This final issue is filled with happy surprises, some of it a bit to good to be true, but the golly-gee-whiz space opera of Empress demands that you suspend disbelief

Colorists Ive Svorcina and Sunny Gho turn Stuart Immonen and Wade von Grawbadger's compositions into space opera eye candy.  It is all prettier than I expected.  Usually I have to find a copy of The Adventures of Nikki Harris the Cybermation Witch or some old B.E.M. comics from Gilbert and Jaime Hernandez when I want to have so sparkly, old-fashioned sci-fi fun.  Now, I have Empress, too.

I am glad to hear that there will be two more Empress miniseries.  Hopefully, they will be produced by Millar and Immonen and not some surrogates.


Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

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