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‘Once & Future #10:’ Advance Comic Book Review

Quick recap: Prepare yourself for some epic irony. Duncan and Bridgette kill Beowulf. So… who should come knocking at Bridgette’s door but the monster that Beowulf slew in the poem. If you know, you know.   

So… Duncan’s having trouble getting a ride to Bridgette’s home. Americans might get a good chuckle here… he’s trying to travel a mere 15 miles. Meanwhile, trouble has ripped open the front door at the home. Bridgette is left with just her vast experience and limited resources to fend off the fiend.

While this is a pretty tense issue, it’s actually noteworthy that the vast majority of it takes place inside the home, with Bridgette stuck inside with the monster hunting her. In other words, Kieron Gillen kinda flips some horror genre tropes on their heads in this issue, with a monster hunting a not-so-nubile, not-so-naïve prey that has given more lumps than she’s taken. One of the things that Gillen does so well is reminding us of the humanity of Bridgette; sure, she’s done some questionable things and her entire reputation is pretty much built on being a tougher-than-nails old broad, but she’s also shown moments of tenderness and regret. This is a reason why #StoriesMatter to me, especially in ongoing narratives is that their ability to reveal deeper truths about characters. Perhaps in time, we’ll learn more about Bridgette’s illustrious and complicated past. Oh, and Duncan’s journey from mildly oafish fuddy-duddy to his present self has been a trip!

Dan Mora is one of the few people who can make gore look beautiful. Grendel’s carnage is a sight to behold, and Tamra Bonvillain’s fantastic colorwork makes it all pop. Ed Dukeshire delivers as usual with his lettering. Maybe I’m a dork, but I really love it when I can tell the tone of the writing by the lettering, and Dukeshire does this really well. He’s so good that you can even tell, even subconsciously, when there’s a mid-speech turn.

Overall, a tense (but occasionally hilarious) issue that’s hinting at a bloody showdown in Midsomer Norton soon. Well… it’s gonna take more than disarming charm to deal with Beowulf…

Creative Team: Kieron Gillen (writer), Dan Mora (artist), Tamra Bonvillain (colorist), Ed Dukeshire (letterer)
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Click here to purchase.


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