This week, Titan Comics kicks off a series based on The History Channel’s hit show, Vikings. Is it good?
Vikings #1 (Titan Comics)
- Character bios at the start. Never a good sign.
- …and honestly not really necessary. The narration and dialogue are introducing the folks we need to know just fine.
- Everyone loves a good pillaging (except Floki, it would seem).
- Dang. Aslaug don’t play.
- Justice in the Viking culture look pretty painful, but at least they don’t have to deal with lawyers.
- You know things are about to get real when a Christian soldier call you a pagan.
- I want to like this King Ecbert fellow (especially after that ‘who sinned against who’ line), but something about him seems off.
- Yep. Something’s definitely off.
Is It Good?
I’ve never watched the Vikings television show, although I’d heard enough good things that that comic adaption seemed worth giving a shot. And for the most part, it is.
The story is a little bland at first, but quickly grows more interesting by the end. I also appreciate how well writer Cavan Scott juggles all these characters. Despite my earlier snark regarding the character bios, I did go back and sneak a peek at them every few pages, but that was mostly because he’d made me interested—not because I was lost. And trust me, if I’m not getting lost on an unfamiliar franchise book, then anyone else who hasn’t watched the show should be completely fine.
The art shift from the issue’s two locations was a little jarring at first, but I appreciate what Staz Johnson and Richard Elson are (I think) trying to do. I also really like Aslaug. I know Vikings fans will probably hate me for making a Game of Thrones comparison, but she seems like a more pragmatic (and potentially more brutal) version of Cersei Lannister. That may be completely off the mark compared to how she is portrayed on the show, but either way, I hope we get to see more of her going forward.
On the negative side of things, the action scenes felt a bit stilted. There’s also a lot of glaring and staring between the characters. It sometimes felt like I was watching a medieval version of The Office.
But that being said, the art is generally very good and the story is well written. It also has enough potential upside that even if you aren’t a fan of the show, Vikings is still worth checking out.