Altered States takes some of Dynamite Entertainment’s well established characters and transports them into situation that they’re not used to. Take this one-shot comic, Altered States: Red Sonja, for example. Red Sonja gets whisked away from a battle in ancient times to a museum desk job in the heart of New York City. Sort of like an Elseworlds title, but different.
Writer Brandon Jerwa is no stranger to Red Sonja or Dynamite. He’s one of the more reliable of their stable of writers. At first, I was a little worried when I read the premise of this issue, as this type of story has been done other places before, but I had high hopes when I found out that Jerwa was writing it, and I was not disappointed at all. Jerwa gives us a complete, entertaining, and interesting story that grabs Red Sonja straight off the battlefield and plants her squarely as a 27-year-old museum worker. Due to some unfortunate circumstances, her long-time villain, Kulan Gath, is resurected and runs havoc on her and the citizens of New York. Jerwa creates a fantastic NEW character in Sonja Majeure, one that I would actually read a comic series about, and he even gave her a very entertaining supporting cast.
Artist Juanan Ramirez totally brings it in this book. Not only does he do justice to the Hyborian age, he’s just as awesome drawing modern day New York City. And when he combines the two? Look out, it’s pretty awesome! I’ve looked back on the issue twice, and I honestly can’t find any panel or page that I wasn’t entertained by. He’s done a great job on this book!
If I have one complaint, it’s that this title should’ve been a four- or six-issue miniseries instead of just a one shot. Brandon Jerwa does a great job telling a full story in this issue, but I can only imagine how much better it would’ve been had he had the time to stretch things out a bit. But, as it stands, I would highly recommend this to you. If you’re a Red Sonja fan, it’s a great change of pace, and if you’re not, it’s a nice taste of the Red Sonja character that will get you hooked and ready to jump into the regular series!