Red Sonja’s latest series is the most brutal and savage series of late. Compared to her version in Mark Russell’s series or Jordie Bellaire, this version is a lot more wild in nature and art.
Jonathan Lau’s art style delivers a Sonja with more unkempt hair, and the linework and scenes showcase her in more violent ways. We see Sonja curb stomp a head, or leave an enemy to be eaten alive, before she beheads them. All of these sequences portray Sonja in the light of a barbarian, more so than in the other series. Jordie Bellaire’s version has showcased a more charismatic leader who cares for those around her, while showcasing her strength to destroy an entire brick wall. Mark Russell’s iteration delivers a tactical leader who focuses more on allies and war tactics, over swordfights. This series different iteration work extremely well for the context of the series.
In Age of Chaos, Sonja is depicted as a savage barbarian, who seeks to kill all necromancers and vampires. Having killed the last necromancer; We see Hel as she summons vampires, demons and undead to Sonja’s realm. This brings about a changing of events as we will see the unfolding of more creatures that Sonja will have to deal with, but rather than pure bloodlust, we have sentient characters. Sonja will have to face Chastity, Jade, Ernie, Purgatori and more.
As a new series, I’m enjoying how well Jonathan Lau’s artwork complements the setting. Lau delivers a savage take on all characters, while giving some classier moments with characters like Purgatori or Jade. Each depiction of these old Chaos! characters brings a lot more of a diverse group of characters to heighten an already brutal storyline. Seeing if Sonja will befriend Chastity to beat Jade or how Ernie will interact with more catfights, will be fun to see in both the art and writing.
Since Hel has become the puppet master pulling the strings, we k now that Sonja will ultimately seek her out to beat her, but how we get to that point is what will be the fun part. As characters, Sonja’s savage nature will work well with the bloodlust tendencies that Chastity has at times. Sonja interacting with Ernie should lead to more of Ernie’s more laid back personality when it comes to women. We’ll also see how well Jade and Purgatori will fight against someone like Sonja, whose savage depiction can be just as bloodthirsty as these characters.
Overall, this series first foray into a new depiction and interactions for the character of Red Sonja looks fantastic. I love how well this art complements the plot and storytelling elements of this series. We are getting a series whose characters and setting differ wildly from other iterations, in a way that will make for a more action packed story, without lacking elements of humor from characters like Ernie. This will be one of the most satisfying stories at Dynamite, unfortunately, due to the separation of Chaos! with Brian Pulido, there won’t be any Lady Death in this series, but who we do have will still make for a fun ride.