Eternal Empire #2
Publisher: Image Comics
Writer: Sarah Vaughn & Jonathan Luna
Artist: Jonathan Luna
Colors: Wesley Wong
Letters: Jonathan Luna
Review by PeteR
A bad review is like baking a cake with all the best ingredients and having someone sit on it. Dannielle Steele
Previously in Eternal Empire, a white haired female slave (Snowhead?) working in the frozen fields of Essla begins to have visions of a warm place away from her tormentors. It is announced that after over a hundred years, the forces of the Empress’s army has finally defeated Kadel. The slaves are given an extra ration of drink and forced to dance to celebrate the victory. Snowhead is beaten by the guards for not dancing. That night after another vision, Snowhead narrowly escapes the farming compound. First she barely fending off the most incompetent guards is all of fiction, in the midst of a white-out blizzard. Then she is buried in the snow until the blizzard passes. She travels a great distance over a period of time and encounters a young man in the forest. A fire spontaneously erupts between them.
Eternal Empire#2 opens in Qaara where a group of slaves are trying to erect a statue of the Empress. A rope breaks causing the statue to fall and break. The slaves are sentenced to ten lashes a piece. One of the slaves, a young Pharrian man, suddenly has a vision of fields being worked by other slaves and patrolled by guards. It turns out his experiences are happening at the same time as Snowhead’s in Essla. The young man escapes and is drawn to the south where in a glade in a forest he encounters Snowhead. Both the man and the woman’s hands erupt in fire. They find themselves surrounded by enemy soldiers. The two escapees form fire swords in their hands. To be continued.
Sarah Vaughn (the writer, not the jazz singer) previously co-created Alex + ADA. She also wrote Deadman; Dark Mansion of Forbidden Love. Eternal Empire#2 is about evil rulers, slaves, a dragon one hundred and forty-one years ago, useless soldiers and magic fire. I wish I read this last night when I had insomnia so I could have had a good night’s sleep. Other that the obsessive focus on the orbit of the three suns, there is nothing in Eternal Empire#2 that has not been done previously and better.
The artwork for Eternal Empire#2 was computer generated by Johnathan Luna. The faces had no dimensions or changes of expression other than the eyes moving. He consistently appeared to use only one line weight in his art. There was no sense of flow between the panels. It felt like I was watching the images on a slide projector.
Eternal Empire#2 was colored by Wesley Wong. There was little to no use of secondary hues in his pallet. The nicest thing I can say about the coloring was he at least had his light sources right.
In 1980, artist Wally Wood created a guide called Wally Wood’s 22 Panels That Always Work!! The purpose of this guide was to give artists a short cut on ideas about how to make their comics visually interesting. I would recommend that both Sarah Vaughn & Jonathan Luna print out copies of Wally Wood’s guide and hang it over their desks.