Compared to previous authors works with Red Sonja, the team of Erik Burnham and Jonathan Lau has created something special with their ongoing series at Dynamite. Age of Chaos is a series that uses Lau’s style to its full effect by giving a more aggressive and feral look to all its characters, sacrificing beauty for a tale of two armies.
Within this issue, we see Lady Demon recruit Chastity, Sonja and the sniper from the first issue to go up against Ernie, Hel, Purgatori and more. This creates a pretty standard story as two big deities fight things out and use the heroes and villains as pawns. What sepeartes this issue and series apart though is the delivery from Lau.
As an ongoing series, if Dynamite hired an artist like Mirko Colak, who’s on Mark Russell’s run, it wouldn’t work. Dynamite did an amazing thing by hiring an artist who’s able to transform this story into a whole new thing. Seeing Red Sonja and Chastity charge Lady Demon, or the scene where Chastity tears a vampire in half; all of these elements by Lau generate a different tone and setting that befits the story that Burnham is telling.
Within the first issue, we saw the characters who are playing this game, and we saw Hel move her pawns to the amulet. We also saw that Chastity was sent to Sonja’s location and can assume that the other players are elsewhere in the land. Using the fist issue to set up the characters and the second to explain the plot, Burnham has given us what we need to know so that the next issues deliver more impact as the stakes get raised and more characters meet again.
Compared to other series with Red Sonja, this feels like her version of Vengeance of Vampirella in tone, but with a different style. Where Vengenace has a more Sci-Fi feel and the art is clean, this has more wild art that depicts a different kind of land.
While Russel gives us the king killer and Jordie gives us a boisterous barbarian who’s loved by her people, Burnham gives us the most aggressive, violent and exciting version of Red Sonja; a savage Sonja in current comics. I loved that the art continues to make the story pop and adds to the tale, and can’t wait to see who meets Sonja next and how things go down in this war amongst gods and demons.