Review: Horizon: Zero Dawn #3
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Anne Toole
Artist: Ann Maulina
Colorist: Bryan Valenza
Letterer: Jim Campbell
Reviewer: Tony Farina
Amadis and Talanah jump off a cliff (literally) and run for their lives (literally). Along the way, they share some of their back stories, which are more similar than they may have thought.
Horizon: Zero Dawn #3’s artist Ann Maulina is a star. There are some panels in this where the leads jump off a cliff and have to get themselves to safety from the river below. Not only does Maulina, pull off this whole aspect of the story with almost no dialogue, she still tells us a ton about the characters. Amadis and Talanah have distinct character traits that become abundantly clear in simple actions and facial expressions they make during this escape. It is excellent storytelling. I really think the colorist, Bryan Valenza, brings his A game to this book. There are some distinct color palates on this world and he sticks to them. This shows us the kind of place we live. There is tech so the colors should feel muted by the shine. Anne Toole is no slouch in the storytelling department. She uses flashback really well here. Last issue, I felt that I didn’t know enough about the characters and would have liked to see some of this before. Still, the set up was smart showing why she is writing comings and I am writing about comics. She needed the trust between Amadis and Talanah to grow so the flashbacks could be told to each other so they have the information too. If the readers know, but the characters do not know, that makes for an annoying, difficult read.
Horizon: Zero Dawn #3 has only one drawback, one of the back stories, while compelling, is not highly original and there is a classic fridge move. The lead of this book is still a woman, and the male character seemed to have some motivation before the love of his life is killed, but still.
Horizon: Zero Dawn #3 is pretty strong. The flashbacks actually help a lot for folks who have no clue about this world. They are not done in any way that feels too full of pointless exposition. Everything makes sense now. The last panel is special and should bring readers back next month.