Kel Symons’ new sword and sorcery comic is right as ‘Reyn’

(Image Comics)

Did you ever read a story where you love the characters instantly?

Then you really want to check out Reyn #1 from Image Comics … it’s a swords and sorcery adventure that is deep into the lone wanderer motif – up to the hilt. I’m a sucker for a wandering hero moving from town to town in search of adventure, particularly if it’s in a fantasy milieu, but this comic is a lively and rich tale set in a land ripe with mystical danger and characters with mysterious backgrounds.

The series debuts this week from Image Comics, written by Kel Symons and drawn by Nate Stockman.  Written in the same tradition of compelling characters as Symons’s previously established hit, The Mercenary Sea with co-creator Matthew Reynolds, Reyn does not disappoint.

We meet Reyn – a Warden of Fate, an order of warriors thought to be long-vanished. We get hints of his disciplined life, but we soon see that he is no saint. It is this mixture of flaw and finesse that makes Reyn such an exciting hero to follow and we likewise want to know more about Seph the Healer and her own Order.

Stockman’s art is solidly drawn and clear. His action sequences are energetic and dynamic. This is a well-drawn comic. For a first issue, this is a great introduction to the characters and the new world in which they live. Of course, any world of swords and sorcery needs a map. The Land of Fate is illustrated for us in an unlabeled map, which invites the reader to discover the land as well as the characters. It is a subtle but effective technique that draws us in to find out more.

(Image Comics)

With plenty of action and easily-discernible factions, this comic inspires immediate devotion to its characters.  In as much as Reyn is a stranger, so are we to this environment. But we have the added desire to not only know more about the Land of Fate but also about Reyn. Also, the story is narrated by Seph, who we don’t meet until after the prologue. We are also drawn to her and the eventual partnership these two are foreshadowed to form.

There are many unanswered questions that beg to be reconciled: the history of the land, the strange creatures that dwell in the castle of the baron, and who is Reyn talking to when he is by himself? I want to know more about this story and these exciting and entertaining characters that Symons and Stockman have created for us.

Of course, it’s all about the characters. Not only are they authentic and believable, but they are truly likable and entertaining. This is an extremely enjoyable book that you need to pick up and start from issue #1. If fantasy worlds and characters with mysterious backgrounds are your bag, then you will love reading this.

Entertaining characters and a strong fantasy world are a wonderful combination. If you love comics set in this genre, then you definitely need to visit the world of Reyn.

About Captain John K. Kirk

Captain John K. Kirk
John Kirk is an English and History teacher and librarian in Toronto, Canada. In addition to the traditional curriculum, John tries to teach his students to make sense of geek culture. And with the name "J. Kirk," it's hard for him to not inject "Star Trek" into his lessons. Comics, RPGs and the usual fanboy gear make up his classroom resources.

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