Story: Dennis Culver
Art: Justin Greenwood
Colors: Brad Simpson
Letterer: Pat Brousseau
What They Say:
Find out what drove the mighty swordwoman, Bloody Bliss, to become a reclusive old crone. A story of love and life lost from Dennis Culver (Burnouts, E is for Extinction) and Justin Greenwood (Stumptown, The Last Siege).
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
The opening installment of Crone played to the fantasy world in a really good way where we had the tales of youth about Bloody Bliss and saw how she’s spent her remaining years waiting on death. Dennis Culver played within a familiar area and executed it well so that you wanted more of her story on both sides of the coin to understand her and why she came to this. At the same time, Justin Greenwood gave us a book that looked great, bright and vibrant in the younger days and cold and gray in the older that tied it all together well. There’s always that line about staying alive long enough to become the villain but there’s also living long enough to forget why you fought to begin with and refuse to do so again.
And Bloody Bliss is doing her best to refuse Gaspar his call to action here with his daughter Corinne. Bliss simply can’t believe D’kayde has come back to life and seeing in the past how she cut his head off and dropped it down so that it spiked itself makes it clear that he’s no more. That victory lead her and her group to free the prisoners of the time, the slaves of D’Kayde, and work toward hunting parties and more that would go after the final victory. But it also introduced Bliss to a woman that was being held named Ella. And it’s that rare love at first sight moment that overtakes Bliss and surprises the rest of her party. Bliss doesn’t smile much outside of battle but this… This is real. And she does her best to teach Ella the ways of the sword so they can be together, to fight in the remaining battles as the last leaders of D’kayde are hunted down and dealt with.
But Ella had no steel in her heart for such things and we see how Bliss found a place for them hidden from everything where they could go while Ella fought. But even this proved problematic since Bliss would be gone for long periods and reveling in it all while Ella was alone. It’s a familiar enough tale but as Bliss tells it in the present to Gaspar as she continues to wait for death, it helps to form the change within her that it’s time to look for it in a different place. She’s not intent on going into battle to die for Gaspar’s cause, but she may find what she needs by going that route. It’s good to see how she comes around to this, taking on Corinne as a squire, and to see the first moments of the battle go so wrong for her. Time has passed and things are not what they once were, which makes for an interesting read.
I really liked Crone in its first issue and what it was doing and that had me hopeful that it has a good path forward. The second installment shows her shedding what she’s been for years in order to seek out what she needs through another method and I’m definitely looking forward to seeing more of how she can handle the different narrative of the world than she was used to. Culver’s script is solid and covers a lot of things in narration while Greenwood’s artwork is strong throughout, making for a compelling read.
Age Rating: 15+
Released By: Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: December 4th, 2019