The continent of Madaras once promised a new start for settlers, but 200 years after its discovery, the war rages on. Deep within this savage and untamed land, a darkness builds at that must be stopped at all costs.

In July, Image Comics released an interesting new dark fantasy series called Reaver. The first two issues have been great. The dark and violent nature of the story is evident from the start. We see two of the main characters involved in a battle where magic splatters a number of the combatants and running away is probably the best thing they can do. It goes downhill for them from there.

The set up in the first issue is a fantasy Dirty Dozen (half dozen in this case) story. An empire is in a war over some land that was discovered a few hundred years ago. It’s not entirely clear what its value is but it is clear that there are several groups of combatants fighting over the land. One of the empire’s enemies is using powerful and terrible magic to scry the empire’s plans and counteract them. A wizard working for the empire has worked out how that the divination requires massive amounts of blood sacrifice and that there is only one place that this could be happening. He’s also worked out how to stop it.

The mission will require a team of skilled murderers to infiltrate enemy territory and kill the wizard doing the divinations. It’s a suicide mission. The team he has selected are all prisoners condemned to die for terrible crimes. They are given the choice to accept the mission or die. They have had a poison administered to them in their food and water. The wizard has the antidote. If they don’t do the job, they don’t get the antidote and die a horrible death. It’s clear from the beginning that they are going to be in for it. I’m looking forward to seeing just how much trouble they will get in and how much trouble they will cause.

Writing by Justin Jordan

Art by Rebekah Issacs

Color by Alex Guimaraes

Lettering by Clayton Cowles

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