Friday, June 18, 2010

Age of Bronze #30

by Eric Shanower

It's been about six months since the last issue of Shanower's epic masterpiece re-telling of the Trojan War appeared on a comics rack, but I have been finding it easier than ever before to dive back into the story, where before I used to find it difficult to keep track of characters.

At this point in the story, the war is raging on slowly in the background, as Shanower turns the spotlight on some of the women of Troy, especially focusing on Cressida, the abandoned daughter of Kalchas, who betrayed Troy to work for its Achaean enemies.  This is about the third issue that has been telling the 'Troilus and Cressida' story, and I have enjoyed the way that Shanower has integrated it into his larger narrative.  The cover is very appropriate, as much of this issue is taken up by Pandarus's efforts and machinations at bringing the two lovers together.

The rest of this issue is concerned with Helen's decision to leave Troy in time for the birth of her child.  There is a great scene in a temple, where we learn a little about the reactions to Helen of the other women of Troy; it's not all that positive.

While I've always found this comic to be interesting, it is the recent shift in focus to the women of Troy that has my attention now.  Women are usually secondary in any telling of this story, which is ironic when you consider Helen's primacy in the whole thing.  It is nice to see so much detail and thought being put into the lives of Trojan women, who suffered so much through that war.

I know it's a tough sell to convince a new reader to pick up a book like this, but Age of Bronze is a brilliant comic, and more people should pick up the trades and give it a try.

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