Story: Mirka Andolfo, Luca Blengino
Art: Giuseppe Cafaro
Colors: Chiara di Francia
Letterer: Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou
What They Say:
Sitha has finally embraced her real mother once more. With her mission accomplished at last, Red Sonja is ready to go home…but then, why do her instincts tell her that danger still lurks? Sonja will discover that in this village, nothing is really what it seems.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
Mirka Andolfo, as she writes alongside Luca Blengino, has had a strong run as the series has progressed with their time spent with the character. The story hits a big point here even though it’s largely quiet as we get the calm before the storm of the finale. It’s the piece that fills in a lot of the blanks but all of that has to be taken with a grain of salt considering how this world works. Giuseppe Cafaro is handling the artwork with Chiara di Francia doing the color design and it’s really great. There’s a really great sense of color to this that gives it an almost film-like feeling at times. It’s richly detailed and immerses you in this engaging world in a really great way. I love the look of the cast and the expressiveness that we get as well.
Sonja and Sitha’s arrival at what looks to be Sitha’s true home is one that starts off confrontational but has it turning welcoming quickly – and before any blows are traded. Sonja’s protective nature of Sitha is strong here and the minor amount of trust she gave recently to others isn’t being played out here in the same way. What we get is the leaders of this place talking plainly and clearly to her about what goes on here in a land full of women who protect against the male demon that resides in the volcano. It’s a good classic kind of setup that appeals a lot to old-school fantasy of this nature and I like how we get a good exploration of how positive things work here and that a lot of people really do fit in well. Even Sonja thinks of it as a really good place to potentially be but she knows she must wander more than anything else.
I really liked seeing Sitha realize that this is home and the memories she has of it and then being introduced to her mother, relating to events of the past in how she was lost and how the demon inside her would draw her back here eventually. Sonja helped hasten that, which earns her the invite to stay, but we see the hard reality of Sonja needing to leave and the impact it has both on her and Sitha. It’s a good moment that sets up for the final issue but provides the nice if not unexpected twist while she departs in realizing that what she saw in this place is not what it seems. It’s the ultimate “I almost got away with it!” moment for the place and we have to see what the reality is in the finale, but it’s a good twist that leaves you disappointed that Sitha wasn’t going to find this as her reality because it’s exactly what she needed.
As always with this series, there is a lot to like here. It’s a plus that it’s mostly dialogue and exploration of what this land is like and the return to home for Sitha with all that it means. We get to see a good side of both her and Sonja with it and that helps to cement things and leave you feeling like it’s right, even though that obvious edge of waiting for the other shoe to drop happen. It’s a very good read and continued good take on Sonja and her journey, one that really gave us a chance to enjoy the bond she formed with Sitha. It has some interesting places to go in the finale and leaves me hopeful that this team will come back for more some day.
Age Rating: 15+
Released By: Dynamite Entertainment
Release Date: July 27th, 2022