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‘Once & Future: Volume 1’ – Advance Trade Paperback Review

Growing up, my mother would go through different “kicks,” as she would put it. For one six-month period, it was all Jane Austen movies and books, and then Norse mythology. The longest “kick” – and the one I found the most interesting – was her Arthurian period, where she became obsessed with all things related to King Arthur lore. During this time, she read books like Mists of Avalon and watched many on-screen versions of the stories with me by her side. Once I was old enough, she let me read T.H. White’s Once and Future King which I inhaled. Let me just say that the new title from BOOM! Studios, Once & Future, is definitely not a retelling of the classic story, but a modern twist on the classic lore that is King Aurthur.

Once & Future is bound to become a modern classic. It follows Duncan, a museum curator who discovers that the grandmother who raised him is an ex-monster killer. The two end up on a quest to stop a group of nationalists from bringing back King Arthur himself. This is not the King Arthur you grew up hearing or reading about; this is Arthur with a morbid turn. His intentions align more with destruction and possibly racial cleansing than anything of good virtue.

The plot gives us great modern twists while still keeping pieces of the classic tales in place. It’s like they grabbed The Sword in the Stone cartoon and said, “How can I change everything you think you know about this story, yet still have it be recognizable?” They do this, and, boy, do they deliver, packing the series with with adventure, action, Arthurian themes, and fascinating characters that touch on the ones you are familiar with. I also absolutely love Dan Mora’s art. It is clean, yet always full of movement. Oh, and there are a lot of action sequences in this series, so his talent glows. Oh, and it is written by best-selling author Kieron Gillen, so if you are a fan of his, don’t miss this.

If you like dark, modern re-tellings or are a fan of the Arthurian legend, this is a must read. Pick it up at your local comic shop. I say this with vigor: Many local comic shops are still servicing customers via curb-side pickup and mail deliveries. In these uncertain times, help them stay in business and keep the comic book industry alive.

Creative Team:  Kieron Gillen (writer), Dan Mora (art),
Publisher:  BOOM! Studios
Click here to purchase.

H.E. Rogers, Fanbase Press Guest Contributor



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