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Master Darque has been defeated at the conclusion of Book of Death, but Gilad Anni-Padda, the Eternal Warrior, finds himself beyond the veil of life. Beyond time itself. Will he be able to manage to return to Earth? What awaits him in this new place? How does it fare?

Robert Venditti takes us to a place where I have never been after about a year of reading Valiant comics. In Wrath of the Eternal Warrior #1, he takes us to a supernatural realm with both hellish and heavenly elements. There are a number of Biblical allusions; however, much like Fred Van Lente’s Book of Death: Legends of the Geomancer, he also incorporates Greek mythology references from Odysseus to Sisyphus.

Not only are there plenty of awesome references, but Venditti does a fantastic job of characterizing Gilad. He shows him as the unstoppable, determined warrior who never gives up. Venditti uses a perfect line of dialogue to capture his resolve, “If at first you don’t succeed—Try Again!” Venditti balances his determination and resolve with love for his wife, children, and home.

Emphasizing this characterization is Raul Allen and Patricia Martin’s artwork. Allen and Martin do an excellent job laying out these joyous panels using two rows with five columns on the top of the page with one large panel underneath. The multiple panels build up the emotional sensation, climaxing in the large panel. They do this for each of the five senses: smell, sound, sight, touch, and taste.

Wrath of the Eternal Warrior #1 Preview Page

Allen and Martin also expand our idea of demonic creatures with a horde of grotesque creatures in all shapes, sizes, and abilities. Some have six limbs, others are able to fly, and some look like dinosaurs with big flowing locks of hair. They also show their versatility in a nice flashback scene that recaps the events in Book of Death with a Dragon Age-esque art style.

Aside from the different geographic locations and the characters, Borja Pindado’s colors emphasize the difference in the heavenly and hellish scenes. He uses dark blues, blacks, greys, and a muted bluish white to depict the hellish scenes. There are no bright colors, giving these scenes a sense of despair and longing. In contrast, the heavenly scenes in Gilad’s home are more colorful with earth tones including greens, yellows, and browns. However, these colors are much brighter and less muted. It creates a sense of hope and belonging. It is an excellent contrast and helps Venditti, Allen, and Martin show the conflict within Gilad and how he is trapped not only in this strange location but also in his eternal duty and the love for his family.

Wrath of the Eternal Warrior #1 Preview Page

The Verdict

Robert Venditti, Raul Allen, and Patricia Martin plumb the depths of Gilad Anni-Padda’s character in a new and exciting journey that evokes those of the Greek heroes in Wrath of the Eternal Warrior #1. If you are looking to jump into some of the best storytelling happening in comics, this is the perfect spot. Venditti’s script and writing is fantastic and perfectly complements Allen and Martin’s artwork. The book is able to evoke all of your senses and you truly become attached to the Eternal Warrior. You need to go and pick this one up.

Comic Book Review: Wrath of the Eternal Warrior #1
Pros
  • Perfect storytelling
  • Art that captures all of your senses
  • Mythological and Biblical references
Cons
  • Gilad is separated from Tama
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