The Sovereigns #2

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Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment

Writer: Sovereigns by Ray Fawkes, Turok by Chuck Wendig

Artist: Sovereigns by Johnny Desjardins, Turok by Alvaro Sarraseca

Colors: Sovereigns by Mohan, Turok by Triona T. Farrell

All Letters: Taylor Esposito

Review by PeteR

 “…bands fall out. But at the end of the day, they’re like family. You get back together because you have to, because you’re stronger together than you are apart.” ― Antony JohnFive Flavors of Dumb

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The Sovereigns #2

Previously in Sovereigns, The Mighty Samson is on a quest in the year 2525 across a world of destroyed civilizations that while appearing lush is quite deadly. The leaves of bushes slice through his skin and the trees are just mean. Turok, now king of the Lost Valley confronts a malignant black mass that is encroaching on his kingdom. In 2025, Magnus, now leader of the hub of machine conscience, located in Oslo Norway is alerted by one of his robotic drones that Turok has been killed…five years ago. The quandary is, according to the drone’s memory logs, it has only been gone 25.3 hours. Magnus, realizing that he can’t rely on data from a possibly malfunctioning robot, travels to the mystic realm of Doctor Spektor via a magic orb. Spektor tells Magnus he is wrong about Turok’s status and an argument ensues. A frustrated Magnus flies into space to speak with Solar, Woman of the Atom who is currently providing the Earth with free, accessible energy. She explains that Turok’s Lost Valley actually exists outside of normal space/time so his death could have occurred any when. Meanwhile, an insulted Doctor Spektor goes in quest of the Hidden Valley and is confronted by the same malevolent black mass that may have killed Turok.

The focus on four of the five primary characters continues in The Sovereigns #2 Magnus tries to warn the populace of his world not to seek out the Hidden Valley because they won’t find it and due to the harsh terrain may die in the attempt. Solar concludes that she needs to reconnect with her humanity more, so she needs to become involved in the situation. We don’t know if Turok is/was/will be dead or alive. The Mighty Samson continues his trek across the plains in the year 2525. Doctor Spektor battles the dark entity, which ends poorly, but is able to telepathically warn Magnus, Solar and Samson, “The World is shielded from this evil by the souls of the Sovereigns!”

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The Turok back up story in The Sovereigns #2 is part three of a tale that started in The Sovereigns #0 and the second chapter appears in the new Magnus #1 series. According to Comixology, Magnus #1 has not been released yet so I’m missing the whole story. Turok in 2017 on an alternate world, tries to free a woman from a fortress of lizard people only to be captured by them.

The Sovereigns’ #2 was written by Eisner nominee, Ray Fawkes (Batman Eternal, Batgirl, and Trinity of Sin). He is able to juggle the various storylines for each character and timeline at a frenetic pace without confusing the reader. There is just enough presence of each hero to make me want to read more about them without their overstaying their welcome thematically.

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Johnny Desjardins’s art (Vampirella Strikes, Silver Star, Jennifer’s Blood) for the Doctor Spektor sequences, particularly on Page 14 is reminiscent, in my opinion to Tim Truman’s art style. His artwork during the Magnus panels made me think about Luis Bermejo’s artwork. This is not to say that Desjardins’s is not original, but rather to imply that he has (regardless if on purpose or not) channeled excellent and diverse styles for different scenarios. Desjardins is able to communicate through his art, a technologically advanced future-scape, deep space, the mystical realms and a forest run amok. That’s a lot of heavy lifting in the single issue of The Sovereigns #2 and yet, Desjardins composes it with style.

I am going to combine my comments about the coloring on The Sovereigns #2 by Mohan and the lettering by Taylor Esposito together since I don’t know who was responsible for which aspects of the lettering.  Solar’s thoughts and dialogue, instead of the common usage of black type, are comprised of three colors in repeating sequence, blue, red and yellow denoting that she is formed of energy that covers all the spectrum of light. The letters in Doctor Spektor’s word balloons are backlit by a rainbow of colors, providing his comments with a surreal atmosphere. I thought this was an innovative application of color for the lettering.

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Why you should buy this book?   Magnus, Solar, Turok and Doctor Spektor were published originally by Gold Key. Since then Valiant Comics, Dark Horse and now Dynamite Entertainment have chronicled their exploits. One would think after this many interpretations there would be not much else that could be done with these entities. Dynamite, in The Sovereigns #2 ,through Ray Fawkes has found a channel to reintroduce these players in a storyline that is new but also reinforces the elements that have made these characters popular for fifty years

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