Autumnlands: Tooth & Claw #4
Written by Kurt Busiek
Illustrated by Benjamin Dewey
Colored by Jordie Bellaire
Lettered by Karl Kerschl
Cover by Benjamin Dewey
Release Date: February 18, 2015
Cover Price: $2.99
“It’s a dangerous world, kid. Any world, it seems. You gotta know what’s out there that can hurt you. You gotta be prepared to act.” – Learoyd, the Great Champion
Morality can be fairly ambiguous in Autumnlands: Tooth & Claw #4. Written by Kurt Busiek with illustrations from Benjamin Dewey and colors from Jordie Bellaire, this series from Image Comics is a fantasy world rife with animal nations, fading magic, legendary warriors, and vicious treachery.
As the wizards of various anthropomorphic animal races struggle to protect the fallen air city from outside threats, the heralded Great Champion, Learoyd — a human from another time and place — proactively seeks out the enemies and predators that would do them harm. Meanwhile, the mysterious and sly Goodfoot the Trader makes shady dealings with a high-ranking wizard, and only the young terrier Dunstan has the knowledge to foil their plans.
If there is any publisher capable of releasing one solid hit after another, it’s Image Comics — and they’ve got their next major success with Autumnlands. Likewise, if there is any writer talented enough to craft a high quality, thought-provoking, dark epic fantasy, it’s Kurt Busiek — and he’s certainly done so with Autumnlands. Only four issues in, Busiek has put on display his gift of incredible worldbuilding — showcasing various races, social class struggles, an intriguing magic system, and a whole lot of mystery. And as I mentioned earlier, nothing in the world of Autumnlands is ever black and white.
With this remarkable story comes beautiful artwork. Dewey especially shines in issue #4 when boasting exquisite landscapes, ruined cities, and small villages. These outdoor settings are magnified through Bellaire’s brilliant use of a wide scope of colors — whether morose or luminous depending on the scene.
If you have not checked out Autumnlands: Tooth & Claw yet, do so quickly. With only four issues out, now is the perfect time to engage yourself in this riveting and evocative story.