Monstress #20 is such an enjoyable and in-depth title to read through. Some issues have lots of great story and plot movement, some have more subtle points, but all have incredible art to savor and enjoy as you read through it the first time or any time after that.

Beauty In Small Steps

I do not think that we get a lot story-wise from this issue, we get lots of little pieces and hints of things to come, but no ground breaking revelations or advancements. When a comic takes small steps with its story, it needs other ways to entertain a reader and the art of this series fulfills this in spades.

For an example of the continued great workmanship of the art, you need go no further than the first page. It’s a simple, albeit bloody, marriage ceremony between two powerful leaders, the Baroness and the Warlord of the arcanic dusk and dawn court.

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In this one full page we get a great example of the extreme detail put into this book. Many comics will give blocks of solid color with hints of detail here and there to let your mind fill in the blanks. With Monstress, I count only a couple areas where there is simply one color or wash of colors. The rest of the page is filled with minute and intricate details, from the patterns on every robe to the cup of blood, to the background arch. It is very easy to see why the title took some time off to let the art department catch up.

On To The Story

It is very clear this is no arrangement of emotion and love. It is for the sake of power and power alone with Warlord, Maika’s aunt, the controller of said power. This also means it won’t lead to anything good for our heroes.

Little Kippa continues her escape from her captors through the haunted cave. She sees the dead bodies of those that came before. She is attacked by yet another crazy demon as is her little blue captor, trying to interfere. The demon drags them further into the cave. The importance of this will come later.

Ren the Necomancer wakes up in the care of an ancient. The ancient pushes for information, but gets little despite restoring some lost memories.

Maika and Sir Corvin have a discussion about why he wears his mask and where his convictions and loyalties lay.

We jump back to Kippa who reawakens, and once she ignites her lightsaber looking torch, discovers she is in a vault filled with pictographs and writing. We hear a voice wanting to take a look at her with its speech written in the black bubble of demon speech.

Now here, what is the most interesting is the background. Over Kippa’s shoulder is a pictograph of a figure looking eerily similar to Kippa. She holds out a hand like she is trying to stop an ancient demon similar to Maika’s.

Guess Who Came Home

Finally we end with Maika and Sir Corvin running into an old acquaintance, Yvette Lo Lim. They have a quick spat only to be interrupted by someone claiming to be Maika’s father.

This guy is huge and scary. His clothing wreaks of power. Instead of eyes, there are sockets billowing smoke and dark vapors. More importantly on his chest is the tattoo of the demon eye – identical to Maika’s tattoo. This is most definitely not good.

As I said, there really is not a lot to this issue, but every panel is filled not only with such beautiful artistry but also emotion. This could be a silent comic with no words, and while small things would need to change, it could stand on its own and be just as enjoyable. Those looking for a little more substance…’s a safe bet the next issue will deliver some major story.

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