REVIEW: ‘Jim Henson’s The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 3 minutes

 

Age of Resistance #1

Jim Henson’s: The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance #1 is published by Archaia, an imprint of BOOM! Studios, written by Nicole Andelfinger, illustrated by Matias Basla, colored by Miquel Muerto, and lettered by Jim Campbell. After the success of the of the Netflix original, we return to Thra once more in this four-issue miniseries to witness the events of the Gelfling-Arathim war.

Age of Resistance #1 follows Ordon, future Captain of the palace guards at the Crystal Castle. This issue, however, is set further back in time before the Age of Resistance and before Ordon was a Father to Rian. When the issue opens up, we are instantly thrown into the war as a horde of Arathim swarm upon a village outside of Stone in the Wood. The destruction is swift and devastating. There, one Gelfling manages to escape and witnesses the arrival of the ascendancy, a horrifying hive mind that leads the army of the Arathim.

Age of Resistance #1

It is an intense and savage start that foreshadows what is to come. Elsewhere, Ordon is training the best warriors within the main habitat of Stone in the Wood.  All while SkekVar, the General of the Skeksis, watches on. The Skeksis watches over the warrior tribe as he checks in on the progress of the war. SkekVar has been impressed by Ordons’ leadership and offers the Gelfling a promotion. Upon his departure Ordon discovers the collapsed body of the Gelfling who survived the Arathim attack. He requests to be taking to Maudra Vala, the Stone in the Wood leader. The Arathim are coming.

Overall, I enjoyed the issue. It begins with a lot of tension, but the majority of the issue focuses on the character building. Andelfingers’ story does seem to labor at points, especially concentrating on the dialogue. It seems to equate to a lot of world-building with the assumption the reader has seen the Netflix original. It’s still an enjoyable read but you can tell there is a lot of set up.

The illustrations and coloring from Basla and Muerto, fit perfectly in the world of Thra. The images capture the land around the Gelfling with living sentience that embodies the symbiotic life force. This compares beautifully with the sharp, harsh lines, and colors of the Arathim and the Ascendancy. Basla and Muerto capture the clashing of the two species brilliantly. The colors of the Arathim attack really stand out for me; the blood-red and fire orange impressing upon the reader of the danger the spitters represent. My particular favorite are the hints of purples strewn throughout the issue, with the obvious reminder that everything, is linked back to the Dark Crystal. It is the center of all life.

Additionally, Campbell has some notable lettering contributions within the issue also. This is not his first rodeo, having contributed on both Power of the Dark Crystal and Beneath The Dark Crystal. There is a large amount of dialogue within the issue and Campbell balances all of it really well without it being distracted or cluttered. I appreciated the distinct lettering used for SkekVar as it expresses that nasty, sharp, and gruff tones of the Skeksis.

There’s a lot to enjoy about the issue, however, it does leave you wanting more. I do believe that it will set up the arc of the whole story nicely. Ordon was a stand out character during the show and I’m hoping they take the time to elevate his backstory. A solid start, but with much expectation for a more intense story moving forward.

Jim Henson’s: The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance #1 is available now wherever comic books are sold.

Age of Resistance #1
3.5

TL;DR

There’s a lot to enjoy about the issue, however, it does leave you wanting more. I do believe that it will set up the arc of the whole story nicely. Ordon was a stand out character during the show and I’m hoping they take the time to elevate his backstory. A solid start, but with much expectation for a more intense story moving forward.