Who’s in the mood for swords and/or sorcery? I know I am, so let’s talk about Rat Queens.
If you aren’t familiar with the book, writer Kurtis Wiebe’s fantasy story follows a group of badass adventuring gal pals. They’re your standard D&D adventuring party, right down to cursing like sailors (the book’s language is contemporary; no "Hail and well met!" here) and being nuisances to their neighbors. Because if you think about it, having a bunch of adventuring goofballs in your town would lead to a lot of property damage, unwanted noise, and general disturbance of the peace.
And as you might have guessed from the arc’s title, this time, “Disturbance of the peace,” means, “Eldritch horrors invade the town.” It’s a darker story than the first arc of Rat Queens. Much of that darkness comes from its heroines’ pasts, which Wiebe begins to explore in more detail. Snarkiness begins to betray underlying losses and regrets. But no matter what happens, when it’s time to fight, the Rat Queens stand up and fight.
Roc Upchurch and Stjepan Sejic split art duties on this arc. Their styles transition smoothly, and each does an excellent job of creating a stylish, detailed fantasy world. For me, Sejic’s art is actually a bit stronger. His sense of posture and physicality makes body language read on the page. That’s not easy in sequential art. His tentacle beasts are also a lot more imposing, and his designs for magic and spells feel more specific to their casters and, overall, more detailed.
If you haven’t read Rat Queens and are looking for a snarky, funny, fantasy story, you should check it out. The second trade feels darker than the first, and I suspect the third will get a bit darker too. And if you dig it and get caught up, there’s a new #1 coming up in March to jump on.
- Rat Queens, Vol. 2: The Far Reaching Tentacles of N’Rygoth (#6-10)
- Rat Queens Deluxe Edition Volume 1 (#1-10, Rat Queens Special: Braga #1)
Writer: Kurtis J. Wiebe | Artists: Roc Upchurch, Stjepan Sejic | Letterer: Ed Brisson | Covers: Roc Upchurch, Stjepan Sejic, Tyler Jenkins, Michael Avon Oeming, Jenny Frison