Issue by Issue – Oz #7

Writers – Stuart Kerr, Ralph Griffith
Artist – Bill Bryan
Letters – Susan Dorne

In the land of the Flying Monkeys, the nameless one who led the Freedom Fighters there in the hopes that they might raise an army instead got them thrown in a cell. Thankfully, before they are killed, the monkey with no name is given a chance to argue his case. He tells the king of honour and duty, of how the Nome King has none and of how the latter will not brook an army in a neighbouring kingdom to go unchecked once his rule is absolute. The king, for all his talk of rules and law, agrees and the nameless one is redeemed, surprisingly, and given back the moniker he was born with. Even better is the fact that he may very well come away with the army he was seeking. The creators of this book, that being Ralph Griffith and Stuart Kerr along with Bill Bryan then jump to another group of fighters as Kevin, Peter, Lion, Scarecrow and Tin Woodman literally knock on the front door to the Emerald Castle. They seek answers and they seek Ozma and while they doubt that this particular method of forthrightness will work, it is the only plan they have at the minute. Things go from zero to sixty in a matter of minutes as the Nome King sends out a welcoming committee and they soon find themselves in the thick of battle and it does not go well. Finally, the Freedom Fighters who stayed behind to try and find the tunnels that lead below the Emerald City also find themselves under attack by Bane Wolves. The Gump is unafraid as he is made of wood and Amber Ombi is one very brave man but there are a lot of wolves and there seems to be an unending wave of them. When it looks like everything will be lost, Hungry Tiger finally shows up on the scene and his ferocity is unmatched which more than scares the wolves, aside from their leader who only leaves after giving a warning. As it is, Kerr and Griffith do end the book on a bit of a hopeful note as Hungry Tiger has fetched them the one being who might be able to help them – the Queen of the Field Mice. Yet again, this was another exciting chapter that would keep the reader hooked from start to finish as the writers of this tale would weave together all the various plot threads they have going to make for one compelling ride. Bryan’s artwork gets better with every issue and the book looks exceptional under his pen, especially during those scenes of conflict where the pages are jam-packed with the various characters. Great stuff from all involved.

4 out of 5

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