February 19, 2011

Top Cow Reviews: The Magdalena #5

The Magdalena #5
Top Cow
Writer: Ron Marz
Artist: Nelson Blake II
Cover: Ryan Sook

“Blood of the Lamb pt 5”: Patience and her partner Kristof got their butts handed to them last issue and are now captured in preparation for a ritual sacrifice. To top it off, the enemy is planning on using her own weapon, The Spear of Destiny, to kill the two when it comes time to summon Satan. So, like many children, our little Anti-Christ is anxious to get the ceremony underway so he can receive the power that he thinks should be his. Little does he know, it’s gonna take more than rusty old chains to keep the Magdalena from fulfilling her mission and getting out of this thing alive. It must be situations like this that lend to the shortened life expectancy of a Magdalena.

Things move pretty fast in this issue as it looks like Marz lets Nelson’s artwork carry much of the story here. The dialog we do get is forward moving and leaves you wanting more in the sense that you can’t wait to find out what will happen next. Shifting over to the pasty Cardinal Innocent for a bit was a good move, along with showing that he’s all too pleased that contact has been lost between the Vatican and The Magdalena. This is a part of the story that I was hoping Marz would come back to, since it was hinted at in the first issue that he’s not too fond of Patience and wouldn’t shed a tear if she were to be stripped of her title in life or death. Plus, ever since seeing the Emperor from Star Wars, I don’t trust old pasty guys who rule from a seated position anyway. Marz also gives a very good reason why Patience and Kristof weren’t killed off immediately when they were captured. Which I think will satisfy those who are usually put off by oversights like this when a hero is captured by the bad guys.

When it comes to the art, Nelson has yet to fail in delivering a great looking issue of Magdalena! His style is smooth and you’re going to get something nice in every single panel. Even if it’s just a shot of the Cardinal’s mouth drinking out of his pimp cup with a sinister smile. The stare down between Patience and Anton was done nicely with the over the shoulder angle, and along with the tentacled demon fight, it was a stand out part, if you ask me. The only thing that bothered me was that the demon clearly bit Patience as the damage was shown in a couple of panels. Though several panels later the shoulder and costume are back to normal as if nothing ever happened.

I’ve always thought it was a pretty cool thing when a creative team can prove me wrong about a title, and that’s what these guys have been doing for several issues now. The re-introduction of Magdalena into the Top Cow Universe has been nothing short of great for the past five issues, and it definitely shows that if you want to attract a new reader to a title, THIS is how you do it! Great artwork combined with a strong, focused story that doesn’t require you to know years of back story to understand what’s going on.

Till next time!

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  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Top Cow Productions, Gid Freeman. Gid Freeman said: Leave the garbage on the shelf and pick up @TopCow's Magdalena! #comics […]

  2. Billy

    Sounds like Marz is doing his thing with this title. Hopefully I’ll pick this and some other TC stuff up soon.

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