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posted December 23, 2005
P. Craig Russell
Dark Horse and Topps, $2.95
I'm not sure I have anything to add that wasn't said by Robert Boyd in his recent Hit List for the early issues that ran in the magazine: this is a well-crafted entertaining mainstream comic book.
In this concluding issue to the Dark Horse/Topps joint publishing effort, Elric finishes his battle with the forces of Chaos, concludes his struggle with the evil Jagreen Lern, brings about the destruction of the world and the creation of its replacement, and meets his final fate. I'm not a huge fan of Moorcock's work. Although it's obvious he was more on the ball than the vast majority of writers working within the fantasy genre, his work for me succeeds in the context of that idiom rather than surpassing it. Russell does an interesting thing in that he tries to use Moorcock dialogue and exposition without changing a single line: it makes the comic read with the… geez, I don't know, heft?… of an illustrated book, while Russell's substantial chops mitigate the consequences of that approach.
It's really fun to look at, this thing, and if you have any interest in this kind of story, you probably won't be disappointed. Russell's adapting the Ring Cycle for comics soon, which should be even more fun than this guilty pleasure.
This review was written in the late 1990s as part of a then-ongoing freelance gig; I apologize if it reads oddly or seems incomplete.