From: Martin Kuhn
OK, now for BLOOD OF TEN CHIEFS #10!
First, some general comments:
Personally, I liked this issue overall-- I especially like the idea of having a multipart (not to mention *new*) story in the BoTC comic-- and I also really wonder exactly *what* that "messenger" is-- note that it is referred to in the "Next Issue" comment as "a remnant of the High Ones' ancient technology"-- I have a feeling we might very well learn something very interesting regarding the mechanics of sending in this story... Oh, and what exactly happened that caused it to fall out of its orbit? It was supposed to orbit until their departure... and we know "that" hadn't happened... Perhaps its orbit just degenerated by itself... or did something trigger it? Dunno yet.
Artisans and Their Art:
What little commentary there has been on this issue seemed to be somewhat negative towards the artwork compared to the previous ones pencilled by Steve Blevins. I think the problem is mostly that this issue, unlike the others, features characters who we have *very* specific ideas of how they should look. If this were a more "primary" series, I would be more critical about it, but since BoTC is sort of a hodge-podge of artists, characters, and storylines anyway, I don't think it reflects poorly. Compared to previous Blevins works, though, I think the "background" characters are less detailed here-- characters in the distance look a bit too "stick figure"-ish. So, frankly, I don't have a problem with it-- it has the right "spark," as it were, and the story and characterizations seemed to flow reasonably well.
Whaddaya *mean* the Bearclaws at this bakery
are stale? Tastes fine to me...
At least one person commented that they didn't like something about how Bearclaw's character was handled, but didn't say *why*. Frankly, I didn't spot anything the Bearclaw did/said that would certainly be out of place. But maybe I just didn't notice...
"You can see it much better... if you lean back"
OK, everyone, raise your hand if you were just waiting for Skywise to say that line to Foxfur when pointing out "her" star... But, seriously, I'm glad we actually got to see something regarding those two who were apparently quite strong lovemates... Hope we get more scenes with Foxfur later on in the story as well.
From: Dorinda Hartmann
Personally, I liked this issue overall-- I especially like the idea of having a multipart (not to mention *new*) story In the BoTC comic...
Ditto! I enjoyed it a lot.
What little commentary there has been on this issue seemed to be somewhat negative towards the artwork compared to the previous ones pencilled by Steve Blevins.
I must have missed these comments... I'd have to disagree with them.
I think the problem is mostly that this issue, unlike the others, features characters who we have *very* specific ideas of how they should look.
I think you have a good point here, Marty. Unfortunately, people are more likely to complain about a new rendering of Bearclaw than of Freefoot or Skyfire. But even then, I can't find things to complain about in Steve's Wolfriders! They're not Wendy's, but I thought we were over that stubbornness by now. They're his, and they're recognizable, and they're good. They sit, stand, and move like Wolfriders, with a feral edge that makes them totally work for me.
I mean, look, for example, at the fire-circle scene on page 16. Look at the postures. No, really, go to your comic, turn the pages, and look at 'em! I'll wait. <hum, hum, hummmm> Back now? OK, take a look at the elves perched and draped in the trees. With just a very few lines, Steve creates the impression of lithe grace, Wolfrider-ness, if you will. And if that doesn't grab you, try Bearclaw drawing his sword on the next page. Or two pages after that, Bearclaw and Joyleaf riding their wolves (I think Steve-- and Craig, let me not neglect the inker-- have the 'sweep' and grace of the wolf/elf synthesis down to a T). Hrm, as usual, too many examples of stuff I liked. The characters seem 3-D, touching the ground, other surfaces, and each other, with some texture to them. And Suzanne's colors came in to great effect-- check out page 9, bottom, for example, "Skywise! What's wrong?", with those reds and yellows. Or the elaborate center pages showing the beginning of Skywise's dream of the High Ones' story, in increasingly vibrant colors, all against a background of starry space. (And not just white stars, either, but a sprinkling of the reds and oranges and blues you really see in the night sky.)
(Speaking of starry space, scope that cover! I enjoyed the starry background there too, as well as Bearclaw's feral expression and the use of the colors in the leaves of the trees lit by the descending fireball. And who did the cover? I turned to the inside and read it. Barry Blair. So nyeah.)
I was also happy to see a little more of Joyleaf. She's no shrinking violet-- she goes riding to Bearclaw's rescue without hesitation (and models the "Open up in there!" school of elf-troll relations that will come in very handy for her son not too many years later). And a couple of lines that made me grin-- Skywise's "Aw, Puckernuts! I'm tired of being treated like a cub!", with Cutter's prescient reply, "You'll get used to it..."
Out of the mouths of babes...
So. To recap. This issue, me, much enjoyment. Pencils, inks, colors, script. Hearty cheer.
But, seriously, I'm glad we actually got to see *something* regarding those two who were apparently quite strong lovemates...
You probably remember, she showed up in a very early HY, as well-- the one about Skywise's unhappy birth. Y'know, whenever Skywise sneaks off for a quiet bit of, uhm, stargazing <ahem> with Foxfur, something dramatic always happens. As soon as he noticed she was in the Madcoil hunting party with him, he should have realized the day would not pass peacefully.
Another county heard from in the ongoing quest for human-wolf balance... - RP
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That's it for this issue - see you in 30! - RP