Issue by Issue – Warchild #1

Writer – Rob Liefeld, Eric Stephenson
Artist – Chap Yaep
Inker – Jonathan Sibal, Danny Miki
Colours – Nathan Lumm
Letters – Kurt Hathaway

In 1995, Warchild would debut from Maximum Press, a publishing imprint where Rob Liefeld would take certain titles away from the Image banner. Almost all of them looked exciting, with over-the-top, crazy and energetic artwork and concepts that seemed exceedingly exciting. Warchild was one such title and to this day, it looks like readers would be in for some epic storytelling if they were to crack it open. The reality is that it is still a fairly good time, but it is a little all over the place when it comes to the writing with the artwork being a little spotty in places when it came to the anatomy of certain characters. The story weaves around three characters in particular, the heroes of the tale as it were – a girl named Merlyn, a cyborg who goes by Stone and the central protagonist named Sword. The book takes place in the present where the group are looking for Sword’s sword and the past which delves into Sword’s background, how he grew up and a girl he loved named Gwendolyn who would meet a tragic end. There is an interesting twist in the moments after Gwendolyn’s death where she is made an offer to live again, though not as she’d hoped and it finds her soul infused into the armament that Sword wields. Eventually the weapon is located, but it only leads to a cliff-hanger where they must face off against enemies that include among their number, the Black Knight. The main problem with this story is that there are things that are not spelled out early enough in the book and it tends to make things a little confusing. Who is the old man that is killed in the beginning and who is doing the killing? Why does Merlyn, who is a little girl, sound like an old man and why does Stone sound like Ben Grimm if he were a cyborg? Both sound really out of place and while they could probably be explained away, they are not and it is more than strange when the only normal character is the main one and his name being Sword and the three of them on a quest to find his missing sword. The best bit of it all is the artwork by the team of Chap Yaep, Jonathan Sibal, Danny Miki and the bold colours of Nathan Lumm that draw the eyes in immediately. So aside from being a little disjointed at times, the book holds a lot of promise even if it only lasted for four issues and an interesting take on Arthurian legend.

3 out of 5

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