Gail Simone’s Red Sonja has been my favorite title for so many reasons – I’m a Simone and Sonja fangirl, first and foremost, but I also love Gail’s run on this series because she manages to capture a vulnerability in Red Sonja that empowers her – she’s at her most badass when she’s gritting her teeth and driving headlong into the fray to help someone less fortunate, knowing full well it’s going to suck out loud. She draws upon her past and puts herself in others’ places, and that’s so often her motivator. Whether or not the Red Devil wants to acknowledge it, she is a good person. Or, at the very least, she is a moral person.
Issue 11 picks up where we left off last time – we’re about to get the stargazer, for this big funeral party that the emperor has charged Sonja with coordinating. The lives of a thousand slaves lay in the balance. But the stargazer is being held by a religious nutbag, who’s torturing him in order to get him to recant. Oh, and Sonja has to cover up. Because, you know, icky girl flesh makes you think evil thoughts.
Sonja is uncomfortable with ALL of this. She thinks back to her childhood, when her family worshipped their gods in a wooden hut decorated with skulls. This guy has a huge palace and guards. It’s here that we see Sonja question organized religion, and what it makes people do to one another. And even when Sonja’s own beliefs are challenged, she respects the right of another person to have those beliefs. And when she pushes back against the machine, watch out.
I loved this issue. Gail Simone and Walter Geovani have created a modern-day parable about faith and religion – and yes, they can be two very separate things – and the right we all have to respect.
Grab this issue. Put this book on your pull list. PLEASE.
RED SONJA #11
Writer: Gail Simone
Artist: Walter Geovani
Cover Artist: Jenny Frison
On Sale: August 13, 2014
Diamond ID: MAR141089