NC COMICON 2019 REVIEW: ‘Tom Clancy’s The Division Extremis Malis,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 3 minutes

The Division Extremis Malis

Tom Clancy’s The Division Extremis Malis #1 is a mini-series published by Dark Horse Comic based on the video game series of the same name from Ubisoft. The comic has launched as an introduction to the game’s setting and story. Tom Clancy’s The Division Extremis Malis #1 is written by Christofer Emgȧrd, with art by Fernando Baldó, colors by Michael Atiyeh, and letters by Richard Starkings and Comicraft’s Jimmy Betancourt. I was able to pick up the comic after my playthrough of The Division 2 while at Red Storm Entertainment’s booth during NC COMICON 2019 in Raleigh.

The comic follows Division Agent Caleb Dunne during the aftermath of a mission gone wrong following the events in New York in the first game, The Division. The beginning pages of the comic are told in a flashback as Caleb goes through the event over and over again in his brain. Caleb feels guilty for losing his partner but also knows something is off about the mysterious woman who killed him. The event doesn’t sit right with him so he sets off the investigate her and ends up uncovering an even larger operation.

I have read my fair share of tie-in comics, particularly based on Ubisoft games, and most of them are not good. Previously, I remember reading a few of the Assassin Creed comics and usually, if not always, being disappointed. Particularly since most of the books followed a character not from the games even if characters from the game’s guest starred in the comic books here and there. Tom Clancy’s The Division Extremis Malis #1 is actually pretty good. Part of this may also be attributed to the fact that unlike many of the Ubisoft’s other titles, The Division isn’t known for its well-known characters so it gives a comic character a lot more creative freedom to create something unique without having to live up to fan expectations.

The plot of The Division isn’t super solid and fairly generic all things considered but if you enjoy a good spy-thriller, this is great. The comic doesn’t take time to set up the world or the story since it is already built on a proven franchise that in all honesty, is not known for its deep world building. Because of this, it allows the reader to be thrown right into the action and creates some fantastic pacing. While the art at moments can be a tad generic, it overall holds up well and the fantastic and very dynamic panel designs, particularly during the more high-octane scenes more than makeup for it. Baldó made some very unique choices, especially earlier on, in this comic in regards to how to set-up the page.

The Division Extremis Malis

Despite being such an action-heavy comic, it does have a fairly long script from Emgȧrd. Overall, I was impressed with Atiyeh, and Starking’s lettering abilities. Very few pages felt crowded despite the number of words on the page, part of this is also attributed to the art design as well as the panel layout.

If you plan on picking up or have picked up The Division 2 and are interested in the story this is definitely a comic to consider grabbing. This issue is jam-packed with action and the only main drawback is it can be a bit vague at times and moves a tad fast but that is mostly a nitpick.

Tom Clancy’s The Division Extremis Malis #1 is available now and The Division 2 is available through our Ubisoft affiliate link.

Tom Clancy's The Division Extremis Malis #1
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TL;DR

If you plan on picking up or have picked up The Division 2 and are interested in the story this is definitely a comic to consider grabbing. This issue is jam-packed with action and the only main drawback is it can be a bit vague at times and moves a tad fast but that is mostly a nitpick.