Writer: Sebastian Girner / Artist: Galaad / Image Comics
Scales and Scoundrels #7 closes its first arc and sticks the landing like a gymnast.
Previously on S&S:
More falling! We pick up with the rapid descent of Luvander and Prince Aki even further into the fiery depths of Dened Lewin. After rumbling with a creature from Lu’s past and hearing a long thought, extinct language, we catch up with these two in mid-fall.
Reveals (spoiler alert)
Issue 7 opens with a light reveal to Aki of Luvander’s identity. Knocked unconscious by the fall, we enter Lu’s dreams again, offering us a bird’s eye view and a distant memory. After the adrenaline of the fall kicks in, Luvander awakens and Aki realizes Lu is not wearing contacts from 2003 but is, in fact, one of the Urden of legend.
After the fall, the dynamic duo keeps it trucking through the very bottom of Dened Lewin, lava and everything! Things get really real when Luvander tells her story and is then triggered by a jewel Aki finds. By triggered I mean turns into a big ass dragon (I called that shit in Issue #1)! Then that Boba Fett/Terminator-type dude shows up and turns into another dragon! Suffice to say, a very gratifying reveal wrapped inside of several other reveals. Scales #7 reads like a layer cake of blood, fire, and magic.
Again, Scales & Scoundrels serves up hella well-constructed narrative. The world building here is grade A. Girner is building the world of S&S with a modality stemming from a sprawling mythological landscape. Each new race of peoples comes with its own tangible culture; the blending of their myths paints the world as one that needs to be explored. A puzzle that needs to be solved. Each issue gives a tidbit of information that pulls the imagination deeper and deeper into the story.
Scales and Scoundrels #7 ties off the arc as cleanly as possible. Luvander’s true nature is still a mystery to the reader, and to the rest of the raiding party. Aki keeps the trigger jewel and Lu continues on her own to find her true self. Dorna gets closure with her brothers’ death and Koro learns about what she really protects. Girner leaves room for everyone and everything to grow out into this wonderful and intriguing world. A world with a Black kingdom in it, just saying.
Reading Scales and Scoundrels? Find BNP’s other reviews here.