mordicai caeli (mordicai) wrote,
mordicai caeli

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Rime-Sark (14)

Northlanders Volume Four: The Plague Widow by Brian Wood & Leandro Fernandez.

I learned the seiðr.
I hung upon the rune-tree,
& tore out my eye.

Hey, you guys like grim stuff? You know, stuff like The Walking Dead, where stuff is really bad, & then it gets worse? Because if so, you'll probably really "enjoy" The Plague Widow, on account of how it is definitely about some rough times. You know, like, living in 1020 CE, that is pretty much a bad start right there. & then everyone in your village gets the plague? & then your husband dies, leaving your martial protections absent & your social position tenuous. & then, winter comes on. You know, one of those winters that left pagan Vikings convinced a wolf ate the sun, that destroyed Napoleon's armies, just freeze that kills. The kind of cold where you know you are going to be seeing someone's hands or feet black with frostbite & rot. Survival horror, the grindstone of every last thing that could go wrong toppling like dominos, & then Old Man Murphy's number one rule kicking in when you thought the last piddling detail had kicked. But here is the thing-- there is a difference between brutal, grueling, backbreaking feel bad, & the alternative. See, because over these last few Northlanders issues, I've figured out that Wood's not opposed to a satisfying conclusion. Maybe the protagonists will will win, or if they are defeated, maybe their death will have meaning at least. & So while the writer goes at it hammer & tongs, you don't know if you're on a one way train to Sadsville, population you, or if you are on the Despite All Odds express.
Tags: books, comics, fernandez, haiku, northlanders, wood

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