Issue by Issue – Arak: Son of Thunder #27

Writer – Roy Thomas, Dann Thomas
Artist – Ron Randall
Inker – Thomas Yeates
Colours – Adrienne Roy
Letters – Bob Lappan, Andy Kubert

Having just won a chariot race in the middle of Byzantium with the Emperor and Empress in attendance and with the show then continuing with a sacrifice of a lioness who before Arak’s eyes has transformed into a woman is the final straw that finally drives him to action. Leaping into the flames of the fire as it threatens to burn him alive, Arak works to free the woman recognizing her for the sister of a woman he saved years ago and once she is, things begin to get really interesting. Written by Roy Thomas once again with a plot assist from his wife and drawn by Ron Randall, the book wastes no time in getting to the action and while Arak is the star of the show when the woman he has rescued finally comes to, one Dyanna by name, it is she that takes center stage to save Arak and Satyricus from being killed themselves. Calling upon the ancient gods, statues come to life and the moon eclipses the sun and as battle breaks out, it is completely in the hero’s favour. As it is, Arak would not see his friend Cometas die and convinces Dyanna that they should leave while the odds are on their side. The book then continues with the return of Valda in a back-up tale where readers see her and Malagigi taking it somewhat easy on their way back home. She reflects on finally finding love with Arak, only to lose him to destiny and then back on her time when she was first training as a knight. Every day she would have to prove herself so that she might earn her spot as her mother did before her and she would do so with a ferocity much to the surprise of those she would face off against. As this story ends, it finds a man named Creston returning from a quest, grievously injured saying he had been maimed by the Arch-Angel of Death, Michael. As Creston dies, it leaves things on a cliff-hanger which readers know will see Valda heading off to investigate and getting herself into a bit of trouble in the next issue. While the main feature was a short one, it was quite good with a relentless pace that made it fly by while seeing Valda again was also welcome, especially as there has to come a point where she will meet up with her friends once again.

4 out of 5

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