Sunday, August 30, 2015

Saturday Revue August 29: The Demon Archives

Ladies And Gents! Let's Get Things Started


When a comic starts like this, you just know things are going to get interesting...
Yep, that's how The Demon Archives starts off. And it doesn't let up.Strap in, hold on, and go here to see this rip-roaring piece by Daniel Sharp, Nickolas Sharp, and Sebastian Piriz.

From the very first page, you're plunged into an uneasy reality that hits too close to home, in a future that could all too easily happen. The creators don't pull their punches when it comes to discussing where our world could so easily go, and it sends a shiver down the spine.
The story centers around the character of Tenzin Dorje, 
a captain of futuristic special ops squad tasked with defending small village enclaves against the vicious raiders who prey upon them. They are the elite, the top dogs. But even top dogs can be taken down...

The Revue

The Raves

This is one of those comics that takes the tired and abused dystopian concept and redeems it. With strong storytelling and artistic use of exposition balanced by beautiful artwork, The Demon Archives must tell you the story of the end of our world before it tells you how it rises from the ashes.
In the hands of many, the task would become a history lesson, a text wall, a bore. But in this comic, it's as quick and direct as a punch to the gut, getting it out of the way in a handful of lovely pages. And then we're dropped into the deep end of the story, immersed in the life of  Tenzin, Captain of the elite Keleres squad.                This is where things get interesting. Gone is the need for exposition; from here on out, all information is given through strong, well written dialogue that quickly and easily enmeshes you in the comic universe. You're seamlessly involved in the routine, the honor and the danger of the life of the Keleres and the personalities of each member. Dialogue and art work perfectly hand in hand, strong composition, character design and use of body language displaying as much of the character's personalities as the conversations do.

 Oh, and then there's THE PLOT!!! If you like brains, there's plenty in The Demon Archives. Brains get exercised....and they also get sprayed across the walls. This comic never lets itself devolve into a shoot-em-up, but make no mistake, there will be blood and bullet fire. It's some of the best use of tactical and actual military knowledge that I've yet to see in a comic. There's also a much more sensible exploration of ptsd and survivor's guilt than you usually see. Speaking as someone with veterans in my family, I really appreciated a more nuanced approach to the psychological side of warfare.

Fascinated and disturbed in equal measure, you can't stop reading. And as you read, you find surprising emotional depths to the characterization, through use of some dream-sequence flashbacks (another broken down old trope Demon Archives redeems with beautiful scene choice and gorgeous art) and the actions and reactions of each character as they interact with their brutal world.

The Razzes

I only have one complaint, and that's that at times, a little too much character development depends on surface characteristics; several characters are given accents and very obvious speech oddities as a way to differentiate them, and I found it a little hard to believe that you'd get such a cosmopolitan crew in a time period when travel is, I'd assume, much more limited than it is today.

Granted, there isn't a lot of time in a story like this to make each character their own, but giving them accents comes off as a very obvious band-aid on the issue. In fact, it makes the problem worse by underlining it.
But if my only complaint is a loophole in travel plans, you don't have a lot to worry about.
Well, okay, I have one other complaint....I have to wait a while to read more! The story is on a short hiatus, and I cannot wait to read more!

The Revue

A wonderful addition to the dystopian genre. READ IT.


  1. AAAAck! Sorry folks working on the image link issue...

  2. Oh hey, a review! Thanks :D Glad you enjoyed it :D

    RE Viktor's accent, he's one of the few that actually has one, seeing as Minerva is actually just south of Russia and he joined up during his lifetime. Most of Minerva's cosmopolitan-ness comes from recruiting worldwide before the world ended. So you have most cultures represented in their central Asian enclave because of that. Current inter "national" travel is indeed much more limited :)


Drop us a line!