Sunday, 30 April 2017

Warhammer 40,000: Will Of Iron #1 - Titan Comics

WARHAMMER 40,000: WILL OF IRON No. 1, November 2016
“Based in the universe of the ever-popular miniatures game, novels, and videogames, this new ongoing series” was probably not the “perfect [entry-point] for both the hardcore Warhammer 40,000 fan and the complete newcomer” that “Games Workshop” and “Titan Comics” arguably hoped for. In fact, it’s hard to imagine anyone not intimately familiar with both the sinister enigmas of Lion El'Jonson’s Space Marine Chapter and the relentless distrust of the Imperial Inquisition, understanding just why Astor Sabbathiel, having witnessed Cypher the Fallen Angel fighting alongside Bloodletters, has become so obsessed with dragging “the secrets of these Dark Angels into the light.”

True, George Mann’s intriguing narrative does provide something of a straightforward setting for these ‘opposing forces’ to meet up against, by conveniently having the “warp storm of eons” abate just long enough to cause Azrael’s warriors and their great rivals, the Iron Warriors, to race towards the Calaphrax Cluster in order ‘protect’ the deeds of their forefathers. But it’s hard to imagine any casual peruser comprehending either the sheer scope or significance of the Horus Heresy, nor interrogator-chaplain Altheous’ earnestness in protecting his brethren’s history from Perturabo’s traitor legion.

Quibbles as to the depth of knowledge arguably needed to fully appreciate this twenty-page periodical’s script aside however, Issue One of “Warhammer 40,000: Will Of Iron” provides plenty of sense-shattering action once Seraphus orders the first wave of Adeptus Astartes to be launched upon the planet Exyrion; “It was here that the warriors of the Dark Angles fought the remnants of the traitorous Iron Warriors in one of the most gruelling battles of the legion’s history.” Indeed, as soon as Baltus and the rest of his Blade Strike Force land and start to “suffer not the warpspawn to live!” this publication literally jumps to life and continues to enthrallingly entertain up until its climatic cliff-hanger…

Just as engaging as Mann’s wicked writing, are Tazio Bettin’s top notch breakdowns. Clean-lined, and vibrantly coloured by Enrica Eren Angiolini, the Italian freelance illustrator imbues both the red-rimmed, manically-eyed Inquisitor, as well as the misshapen monstrosities which stalk the ruinous world, with plenty of inherent deadliness and vigour; even when the later are being rather unceremoniously ripped apart and disembowelled by boltguns and chainswords.
The regular cover art of "WARHAMMER 40,000: WILL OF IRON" No. 1 by Tazio Bettin

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