"Wrath of the Eternal Warrior #13" Comic Review
Written by James Ferguson
Published by Valiant Entertainment
Written by Robert Venditti
Illustrated by Robert Gill
Colored by Mike Spicer
2016, 32 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on November 9th, 2016
Gilad Anni-Padda is dead. In return for his service as the Eternal Warrior, Gilad enjoys time in the afterlife with his deceased family. Sooner or later, he leaves this peaceful utopia and ventures through a literal Hell to make his way back to the land of the living. This time things are different. His oldest son Kalam has followed Gilad beyond the veil of life only to be captured by the demon Pale Herder. Now Gilad is pissed and he's taking the fight directly to the demon as his son's soul hangs in the balance.
What is immediately apparent about Wrath of the Eternal Warrior is how much of a hero Gilad really is. We saw this in his most recent death at the end of Book of Death and it is reinforced with every issue of this series. The fact that Gilad repeatedly leaves pure happiness behind to go through a torturous gauntlet of terror is proof enough. This is a strong man filled with honor who will stop at nothing to do what is right. More importantly, he's learned from his mistakes as we see here during the battle with Pale Herder.
|Click images to enlarge|
Our first glimpse of the Eternal Warrior in this issue is a sight to behold. Artist Robert Gill shows him battle-ready in a full page spread. His tattered cloak flows in the wind behind him. He's got a gun in one hand his signature ax in the other. A quiver of arrows and a bow are strapped to his back. He looks at his enemy and says in pointed words “Give. Me. My. Son.” This is most of the most badass images you'll see all year. If you need further evidence for how awesome the character is, just check out what he does to the lowly demon who dares to laugh in his presence.
On the receiving end of this fierce gaze is Pale Herder, the polar opposite of everything that Gilad represents. He's a lumpy mass of pasty flesh. Although he towers over Gilad as a giant, he looks pathetic yet fierce, if that's possible. Stones jut out of his face and arm. He wields a huge hammer made of skulls. His current prized possession is Kalam dangling from said hammer. Although he's white as a sheet, Pale Herder looks filthy. This is due to Mike Spicer's colors. He gives the demon a grimy quality, like he hasn't bathed in ages. If you walked past him, you'd want to shower immediately.
|Click images to enlarge|
With the exception of a few flashback panels and a couple pages showing Gilad's family back in his afterlife house, the landscape for this issue is entirely bare. It's hordes of demons and nothingness for as far as the eye can see. This makes you focus in on every little detail of the action. Gill's artwork is well-detailed with some very fine lines, especially with Pale Herder, so this works extremely well.
Gilad Anni-Padda is driven by sheer determination. He's faced down foes great and small across countless lifetimes. Now it's personal as a demon has taken his son away from him and he will stop at nothing to get him back. My only disappointment with this book is that this is the penultimate issue. I presume this means that Gilad will be returning to earth to continue his service as the Eternal Warrior, but I'm going to miss this amazing tale. It shows the lengths a man will go through for family and honor. This character is a true hero that can stand toe-to-toe with the legends of the industry. He can have complete happiness for all eternity if he just stays down, but he can't bring himself to do that and let others suffer.