|From Northlanders #10 (2008), written by Brian Wood with art by Dean Ormston.|
Rather than binge reading--plowing through the 20 issues I have in quick order--I have elected to savor each issue and arc, reading them between novels or articles for school and other more recently published titles and series. This has been a most rewarding approach as I'll often reward myself with an issue after having completed other big-boy tasks such as yard work or grading papers.
As a whole, the series reads as an anthology of tales told from a variety of perspectives through a number of historical events set during the Viking Age. While my own grasp of the historical accuracy is limited, it is clear that Wood has done his research. (As readers of the aforementioned Rebels will attest, Wood is nothing if not not through and his sharing of his process and research is in itself fascinating.) Violence, nudity and appropriately vulgar language earn Northlanders its "Suggested for Mature Readers" labeling, but having thus far made my way through the first two story arcs, or ten issues, these adult trope are story driven rather than gratuitous.
|Interior art from Northlanders #7, art by Davide Gianfelice.|
Only ten issues in and I'm hooked for the fifty issue run that Northlanders had, which conclude in 2012, especially as Wood is a constant through the entirety of the series. The artwork is consistently solid, and though it might lack the ultra realistic shading and pencil work that stories of this ilk seem to need, in concert with the writing and coloring it is far more than serviceable. In the majority of cases, I am unfamiliar with the interior artists (the though of Becky Cloonan coming up in 35 and 36 is surely something to look forward to), but they are the capable supporting cast.
As I await the return of Vikings to the small screen sometime in 2016, the prospect of continuing to make my way through Wood's Viking landscape one arc at a time is an exciting one.