Rating: 5/5 – The Albino King’s Tale Gets a Superb New Telling.
by ComicSpectrum reviewer Al Sparrow.
Can you recall the last time a single comic book page held your attention for well over ten minutes? A page where the artwork is so inspiring and beautiful you spent more time soaking it in than it takes to read your standard 22-page comic book? A page that forces you to re-evaluate what you look for in these funnybooks you’ve spent so much time and money investing in? Because if they can look this amazing, then why don’t they? Welcome to the first page of Michael Moorcock’s Elric: The Ruby Throne from Titan Comics.
Moorcock’s melancholy albino emperor/sorcerer/warrior has had his tale told in graphic format many times before, but I don’t think it has ever been told this lushly, with artwork this beautiful, and with as much detail woven into the doomed isle as is given to the people who inhabit it. If comics could win awards for best costume design, as they do with the Oscars, this book would have the nomination sewn up as far as I’m concerned. The artwork in this book is on par with what I’ve come to expect from a Titan book – it raises the bar for everyone in terms of production quality and sheer beauty.
Equally notable is that the book has Moorcock himself writing the forward, giving his blessing to writer Julien Blondel’s take on his character. For those true Elric fans out there who feel they’ve read this story before, take note: Elric’s creator Michael Moorcock, original writer of these stories says of Blondel, “[he] has given the story a few extra twists which, with my approval, have improved on my original narrative!”
All too often when a beloved character is altered to suit a new creator’s vision, chaos ensues, and there can be diminished returns. Happily, that isn’t the case here. This is the Elric adaptation I’ve been hoping to see for some time now. Longtime followers of Moorcock’s stories will find a welcome home in these pages and will be left hungry for the next installment (4 books are planned, this being the first). Newcomers to Elric are, of course, encouraged to find Moorcock’s original text, but they could do a lot worse than to have this adaption be their introduction to the decadent and bloody end of an empire, and the birth of a new era for Elric and his Kingdom.
Reviewed by: Al Sparrow
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