ADVANCE COMIC REVIEW: Aether & Empire #1 – An Overture to Eternal Glory | FanboysInc

ADVANCE COMIC REVIEW: Aether & Empire #1 – An Overture to Eternal Glory

By Jeff Ayers

ADVANCE COMIC REVIEW: Aether & Empire #1 - An Overture to Eternal Glory

Writer: Mike Horan

Pencils and Inks: Bong Ty Dazo

Colors and Cover: Tim Yates


Blue Juice Comics

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The creative minds at Blue Juice Comics are at it again with their newest title, Aether and Empire, hitting comic shelves later this spring. If you have been a fan of The Accelerators or Anne Bonnie, the quality of storytelling and artistic talent remain in top form in this brand new comic offering from this independent publisher.

ADVANCE COMIC REVIEW: Aether & Empire #1 - An Overture to Eternal Glory

Page 1

Aether and Empire wastes no time and immediately hurls you into the fantastical world of flying airships. Set in an alternate 1879, the world seems very much a parallel to our own past, yet with the addition of huge galleons soaring thorough the clouds with the help of large balloons to keep them aloft. There is something whimsical and romantic about an old wooden airship, and many fantasy stories and video games have included such mechanical wonders into their stories. But, writer Mike Horan does an excellent job making the whole idea fully believable, like maybe we just forgot about these ships from our not so distant past.

ADVANCE COMIC REVIEW: Aether & Empire #1 - An Overture to Eternal Glory

Sky battles!

The crew of the Nimbus is patrolling the skies near Lybia, and they see a battle happening on the water below. It just so happens it is a ship of privateers, or pirates from that time period, attacking another one of Her Majesty’s ships. Not only does the Nimbus try and break up the fight, but inadvertently gets into a fight of their own high above the waves with another airship. The crew of both ships suffer heavy casualties, and it seems like the actions of the Nimbus crew do not go unnoticed by a mysterious Admiral in London only a month later.

The “Best There Is”: Aether and Empire has lofty goals right from the beginning, as this first story arc is titled “An Overture to Eternal Glory”. But the story delivers on all fronts, creating some compelling, and slightly mysterious characters and infusing many panels with intense action sequences. The artistic team of Bong Ty Dazo and Tim Yates bring emotion and excitement to the page with their character models, as well as the intricate designs of the ships flying through the air. The mid air battle near the end of the book is breathtaking to behold, and yet you never get too lost within the pandemonium playing out in front of your eyes.

The “Isn’t Very Nice”: As with most first issues, there is a lot of new information being presented, which leads the way to many questions that have yet to be answered in a single comic. Mike Horan does a great job making the idea of flying ships completely plausible in the late 1800’s, but little backstory is given to further that premise. Also, the inclusion of the mysterious Admiral and Mr. Meeks at the end of the issue definitely sets up more ground for the story to cover in subsequent issues, but also adds to the confusion a little to accurately figure out where all these characters exist in relation to one another. Some questions I can’t wait to be answered are: What exactly are the motives of some of the Nimbus crew? And what else is different about this version of 1879?

FBI Score: 9 out of 10. A riveting inaugural issue, Aether and Empire #1 introduces readers to a time much like our own nineteenth century, but with the addition of fantastical flying ships. The action, suspense and mystery are all served up in equal parts making this an instant treasure for your comic collection. Head to your local comic shop and request this book today.

Jeff Ayers

Both my parents instilled in me at an early age the awesome power and incredible wonder of the written word. My father sat with me when I was four years old and taught me to enjoy reading with classic comic strips like SPIDERMAN, PEANUTS, B.C. and, later, CALVIN AND HOBBES. My mother exposed me to such classics of literature as Poe, Tolkien, Stoker and Doyle, and I started my own comic collection with allowance money from mowing lawns. I liked Wolverine before it was cool, I watched as Superman died and returned, and huddled under the covers as I turned the pages of SANDMAN. Reading is like oxygen to me, and all genres and formats are welcome and devoured equally. I am the co-host of The DW and Incredible Jeff Show, CEO of Permian Productions, and a reviewer at Graphic Novel Reporter. I am 34 and live in scenic Saratoga Springs New York, where I haunt coffee shops and dive bars and the best comic shop anywhere, The Comic Depot.

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