When brought together, thirteen artifacts will cause the ultimate destruction.
I shouldn’t be reading Artifacts, let alone reviewing it. I’m currently on volume 4 of Witchblade, which means I should have a whole lot of reading to do before I even understand where Artifacts begins. Yet after reading the first two issues, I am completely comfortable with my limited background knowledge. Ron Marz has written a series that you can read, understand, and enjoy without knowing its history. Top Cow even included the Witchblade origin story, and introductions to the major players for your reading pleasure. This issue is chock-full of extra goodies, from a breathtaking cover by Ryan Sook, to another variant cover from John Tyler Christopher’s series featuring each of the 13 Artifact bearers. I couldn’t tear myself away!
Official press release:
The Event FIVE Years in the Making!
Thirteen mystical Artifacts will guide the fate of the world. Thirteen Artifacts will destroy the world. A mysterious being has taken Hope, the daughter of Sara Pezzini, the Witchblade bearer, and Jackie Estacado, the Darkness bearer; but his intent remains in shadow. As the two frantic parents search for their missing child, other players including Dani Baptiste, the Angelus bearer, Tom Judge, Magdalena and others are brought onto the board.
Artifacts is a shining example of how big events in comic universes should unfold. The plot is revealed naturally, instead of being dropped on us all at once. The second issue of this long-awaited thirteen issue series is just jam-packed as the first. All of your favorite Top Cow characters together, working towards a common goal. Sara is frantic, Gleason is helpless, and beings of both light and dark have arrived. Ron Marz has created an utterly fantastic storyline. He reels you into his plots, and you instantly become emotionally invested. Marz has a knack for introducing characters mid-scene without it being abrupt or confusing for new readers. He is able to write such an engaging story because he has already been shaping many of these characters lives for years.
Artifacts #2 begins with one of the best aspects of comic art: the detail. The blood-covered balloon from the first issue floats by Tom Judge as he broods on a street corner. A skyscraper is reflected in a puddle on the sidewalk, while the store window behind him reflects a curling, flaming burst of hell fire. And this is just the first page! The extremely talented Michael Broussard, who is familiar with drawing ancient unholy power, does a fantastic job in this issue. His panels have a gritty raw aspect, which is softened by intricate details and shading. My favorite part of the art in this issue is the intense shadowing. Strategically placed shadows make an already intimidating face look that much more menacing.
Whether you are a Top Cow fanatic, or an intrigued newcomer, I highly suggest checking out Artifacts. It is riveting story brought to you by some of the best creators Top Cow has to offer. Plus, it’s published by Top Cow! Do you need more of a reason?
Start from the beginning, and read Artifacts #0 in its entirety here!
Written by: Ron Marz
Cover A by: Ryan Sook
Pencils by: Michael Broussard
Inks by: Rick Basaldua, Joe Weems & Sal Regla
Colors by: Sunny Gho
Letters by: Troy Peteri