Comic Book Review: Dejah Thoris #3
It took some time to allow the events of the second issue to sink in, and with that time there was a greater appreciation for what unfolded for Dejah and company. When this was going to be a treacherous mission from the start, it goes without saying that you have to give credit to a creative team that knows how to pull the plug on characters to make a point, execution aside of course since that was still off. Nonetheless the adventure continues as things can only get worse before they get any better with this new obstacle.
This reunion with Jeddak was interesting because there were some hard feelings from Dejah who felt betrayed those years ago. For a girl so naive and filled with purpose at the age, it can be crushing for someone to turn that against her. As if her family wasn’t giving her trouble enough for not seeing the world the way they do as leaders. With that said, this was the perfect opportunity to explore his story and how his journey led him to a Helium prison, and in turn to this throne in Thurd. Some of his story was to be expected, though beyond that it was the perspective needed of the world outside of Helium. While this was an opportunity to open the doors to the dangers outside the palace walls, it was a greater opportunity to grasp the struggles that everyone else faces. That said, you would still expect that Jeddak would bring his own brand of trouble. This deadly game of Jetan he set up for Dejah to win her team back was bold as someone whose life was spared in the past. Especially considering the rules to the game.
The game of Jetan was revealing for the kind of person she was dealing with. If you ask me if this is something I thought Dejah and company would experience on their expedition? I would not have seen it as a possibility till now which I like most about this story so far. For the most part there is nothing that you would expect that they would go through on their way to Ephysium. With the conclusion of the game, the biggest shock was where this victory took them. We could have moved on to a completely different setting, but they thought outside the box with the details we may have missed as Jeddak was explaining his story.
At this stage of the journey, it was an admirable moment for Dejah when this was her time to stand firm on her belief in Ephysium. She may not be the warrior you grew on in her other volume, but this version of the princess has heart that you can’t overlook. She cares a lot for better or for worse. Enough to put the fate of many over the few, and enough to value the lives of those lost to get her team to where they are now.
The artwork for this issue was a big step up in improvement from the first two issues. At this point I’m never too shocked when a book like this may take some time to find its footing in design, but glad when that point comes and the quality is satisfying. The pencils were stronger, more detail put into the characters and settings, and better perspective with objects close or further back in a panel. The way the Green and White Apes were drawn impressed me the most. Great uniformity, they nailed the more distinctive features as well. I enjoyed that sinister smirk from Jeddak very much. These White Apes looked terrifying for the fear that these characters want us to feel from them. With that said, the action was fluent as well, not to mention they knew how to cut from one action to the next for the sake of pacing. That aside, there was also improvement seen in the colors in particular. The more apparent use of gradients, shadows and lighting made a big difference in making the art pop.
With each passing issue, this series pulls us in more. Dejah Thoris #3 took big leaps to make this experience for Dejah exciting. Every choice she makes will have a direct response or consequence, but how she gets out of these situations is what helps her break from the mold.