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Is It Good? The Autumnlands: Tooth & Claw #3 Review

The scariest thing one can face in society is a leader who commands respect and power but is a complete buffoon. If one were to take any meaning from Image Comics’ new talking animal series it’s just how bad things can get when fools run the show.

So far the animals’ floating city has collapsed, leaving hundreds dead. Decisions have been made by selfish leaders and it’s all because of ignorant buffoons running the show. Meaning and great art and story?! Is it good?

The Autumnlands: Tooth & Claw #3 (Image Comics)

If you’re just joining us the series opened with a young dog person praying to the gods. His father was the head of trade, and also wielded magic abilities. Dog boy was being groomed, heh, to take over his dad’s job when suddenly everything came crashing down. Literally.

Magic was being depleted from the beasts, and so they concocted a plan to bring back the champion that bestowed the power of magic to all the creatures. The plan worked, but destroyed their home in the process, and now they’re all getting their bearings on the ground whilst an army of buffalo want all of their heads. Luckily the creature that bestowed their powers way back is super good at killing buffalo and is protecting them. Oh and he’s human. Say what?!

Maybe check to see how low your LCD cabinet is?

While the last issue was an action fest that did not progress things all that much, this issue gets back to the plot development and character building of the first issue. Writer Kurt Busiek instills a new element this issue in regards to the champion that should keep any reader on their toes. I won’t spoil it, but it takes things into a different genre and makes the whole mythology of the champion even more compelling. On top of this Busiek introduces a new wolf trader character (the one on the cover) that complicates the situation nicely.

Some might find this issue a little too wordy, far wordier than the second issue, but considering how wordy the first issue was it’s not surprising. Much of the comic focuses on the leader of the group, or the guy who thinks he’s the leader, try to order people around. It’s clear Busiek is playing around with power, or the semblance of power, as even the champion has secrets he’s hiding. It’s all very compelling and poignant, especially these days where politicians seem to do nothing and care more about how they look then doing anything.

Artist Benjamin Dewey is once again doing stunning work. The detail he instills in the backgrounds and characters themselves is sometimes jaw dropping. Note I said sometimes, as his level of detail has dropped a bit since the first issue, with a few panels getting a bit muddy with the inks, but it’s still fantastic stuff. The bar was raised very high on that first issue, but by no means is the quality bad. Just for his standards it’s not quite as good and honestly I’m being nitpicky.

Yeah I guess animals don’t really shave.

Is It Good?

Another great installment in what is becoming my favorite Image Comics series since Saga. It may be a little heavy on dialogue and plot, but damn is it compelling every single issue.


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